Chief’s Corner – Drug Take Back Event

By Chief Steven J. Wojnar
Dudley Police Department

DUDLEY — I wanted to take this opportunity to inform the residents of Dudley that on Saturday, October 26th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Dudley Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public another opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.  This has been a popular and much requested program in the past.  I wanted to provide some information to people once again on this event.

The Drug Take Back has been held several times over the years in Dudley.  The last took place this past April.  A large quantity of prescription medications and medical sharps were taken in at that time.  The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue.  Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse.  Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.  Studies show that most of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.  In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.  Fortunately, thanks to the effort of District Attorney Joseph Early’s Office, we now have a permanent Drug Disposal Kiosk located in our Police Station Lobby.  These items can now be disposed of locally at any time during the year.  Other communities have these kiosks at their police stations or other town buildings.  If you are not from Dudley, be sure to check with your community for one of these disposal locations.

In addition to the prescription disposal, officials from Harrington Hospital have once again generously offered their assistance to dispose of medical sharps (needles, etc.) on this same day.  Collection bins will be on hand to properly and safely dispose of these items as well.

A number of these programs will take place on this same day in communities all over the area.  If you are not a Dudley resident, please check with your local officials for a disposal site near you.  In Dudley, bring your medications to The Dudley Police Department located inside the Dudley Municipal Complex at 71 West Main Street Dudley, Ma.  We thank everyone in advance for their participation in this worthwhile program.

Thanks again for your questions and comments.  Please send them to me at the Dudley Police Department 71 West Main St. Dudley, Ma. 01571 or email at swojnar@dudleypolice.com.  Opinions expressed in this weekly column are those of Chief Wojnar only and unless clearly noted, do not reflect the ideas or opinions of any other organization or citizen.

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