BILLINGS — The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Montana joins the Drug Enforcement Administration in supporting National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, April 30. The biannual event will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at venues across Montana. The event is an effort to rid homes of potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs.
This initiative responds to a vital public safety and public health problem. Medicines that languish in homes are highly susceptible to being diverted, misused and abused. The rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States are alarming, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses of these drugs.
“The majority of people who abuse prescription drugs get them from family, friends or the medicine cabinet. The DEA’s Take Back Day is an important step to help reduce the epidemic of opioid deaths, overdoses and addiction by getting rid of unnecessary and expired prescriptions. I encourage the people of Montana to help protect their families, friends and community by dropping off unused prescription drugs at collection sites across the state,” said U.S. Attorney Leif M. Johnson.
“We are facing a drug overdose epidemic that is reaching every corner of America. Prescription drugs often end up in the wrong hands, fueling an epidemic that kills more Americans than car accidents,” said Stacy Zinn-Brittain, Resident Agent-in-Charge, DEA Montana, “The power to make a difference begins at home, beginning with the disposal of unused, unwanted, or expired medications that people keep in their homes.”
More than 30 Montana sheriff’s offices, police departments and federal agencies are participating in Take Back Day. Information about collection sites and more information about the event can be found here: https://takebackday.dea.gov/
During the final collection day held on October 23, 2021, 4,276 law enforcement participants at 4,982 collection sites brought in a total weight of 744,082 pounds, or 372 tons, of drugs. This brings the total weight collected to 15.2 million pounds, or more than 7,634 tons, of prescription drugs collected in the history of the program. Collection results may include materials other than prescription drugs.
During the October 23, 2021 event, the Montanans handed over 2,352 pounds of prescription drugs to 42 collection sites. Forty-one law enforcement agencies participated.
In addition to the DEA’s National Drug Take-Back Day on April 30, prescription drugs can be disposed of any day of the year at one of 11,000 authorized collectors. For more information on collection sites, visit: https://apps2.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/pubdispsearch/spring/main?execution=e1s1
For more information on eliminating prescription drugs or the April 30 Take Back Day event, go to www.DEATakeBack.com.