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NAAG Members to Participate in Sept. 25 Prescription Drug “Take-Back” Day Initiative

Washington, DC---Members of the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) are joining the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for the first national Prescription Drug “Take-back” Day on Sept. 25. The DEA is leading this collaborative effort with community groups, public health organizations and law enforcement authorities to collect expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs.

“Prescription drugs can be helpful when used correctly, but they can turn dangerous or even deadly when abused or misused,” said NAAG President and North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper. “By turning in old medications so they can be destroyed safely, people can help keep these drugs from falling into the wrong hands.”

This initiative addresses the safety, public health and environmental concerns that unused prescription drugs pose to Americans. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States are increasing at alarming rates, as well as the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Many consumers do not know how to properly dispose unused prescription drugs, often flushing them down the toilet or throwing them away – both are hazardous to the environment. The disposal of controlled substances—opioids for example---is particularly problematic because of the risk of them being diverted to the black market. The National Drug “Take-back” Day offers a free and anonymous solution to promote the safe disposal of unused prescription drugs.

Preventing drug abuse and promoting prescription drug safety remain a priority for the chief legal officers of the states. Participating NAAG members for the initiative includes such Attorneys General as Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel, Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller, Maine Attorney General Janet Mills, Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray, Washington Attorney General and NAAG President Elect Rob McKenna, and Wisconsin Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen. Additionally over the last year, several Attorneys General offices have instituted their own Drug Take-back programs in their respective states.

In addition to NAAG, other national participants are the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy; the Partnership for a Drug-Free America; the International Association of Chiefs of Police; the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy; the Federation of State Medical Boards; and the National District Attorneys Association.

For information about drop-off locations in your state, visit www.dea.gov.

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