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Press Releases

10/24/2019

Officials Urge Families to Participate In National Drug Take Back Day

Thursday, October 24th 2019 – Today, the Commissioners of the Departments of Consumer Protection (DCP), Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS), and Public Health (DPH), along with West Hartford Mayor Shari Cantor reminded families that this Saturday, October 26th is National Drug Take Back Day. Saturday is an important opportunity for families to empty their medicine cabinets, especially as we are approaching a holiday season when families will have more people in their homes.

 

Here are some ways that Connecticut families can participate in Take Back Day:

 

  • Visit your local drug drop box. There are nearly 100 permanent drug drop boxes in Connecticut where families can dispose of medication 24 hours a day. Find the list of drop box locations at www.ct.gov/dropbox.
  • Dispose of your medication at home. If you can’t make it to a drop box, you can always safely dispose of your medication at home using a drug disposal kit from your pharmacy, or by mixing your medication with hot water and something undesirable (like used kitty litter or old coffee grounds), and placing it in a secure container before throwing it away. Never flush medication down the toilet or the sink.
  • Put Drug Disposal in your Calendar: National Drug Take Back days happen twice a year, and for many families that’s not enough. When you’re done disposing of medication, take a minute to put a day on your calendar once a month, once a week, or whatever you need to dispose of your family’s unneeded medication.

 

“We know there is no one solution to the opioid crisis, but we also know that we all can take small steps every day to improve the lives of those around us, and disposing of unneeded medication is one of those steps,” said Consumer Protection Commissioner Michelle H. Seagull, “I hope that any Connecticut families with unneeded medication in their home will take this opportunity to empty their medicine cabinets, and plan to make drug disposal part of their routine.”

 

“Preventing addiction before it begins is an important part of addressing the opioid crisis in our state,” said DMHAS Commissioner Miriam Delphin-Rittmon. “We can all play a role in keeping prescription medications out of the wrong hands. By bringing your unneeded medications to a local drop box or drug take back event you can help keep your loved ones and community safer.”

 

“Rates of prescription drug misuse in the United States and Connecticut are alarmingly high, as are the number of unintentional poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs,” said DPH Commissioner Renée Coleman-Mitchell.  “Proper disposal of unneeded medication addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing loose pills in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards, which is why it’s so important for residents to learn where to find a local drop box or drug take back event.”

 

“National Take-Back Day provides an opportunity for the public to surrender expired, unwanted, or unused pharmaceutical controlled substances and other medications that could be a potential risk to the public health and safety of our community. The program is a free, anonymous, and open to all,” said Mayor Shari Cantor.

 

Drug drop boxes are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In addition to that, the West Hartford Police Department, the West Hartford-Bloomfield Health District and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration will coordinate a collaborative effort to remove unneeded medication medicine during National Take Back Day this Saturday. Collection activities will take place at the Department of Public Works, 17 Brixton Street from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM.

 

Those with questions or concerns about drug drop boxes or drug disposal in the State of Connecticut may contact DCP’s Drug Control Division by emailing dcp.drugcontrol@ct.gov.

 

Individuals and their loved ones interested in help for addiction can call the DMHAS ACCESS Line at 1-800-563-4086 to be connected to addiction services and treatment. For more information about opioid use disorder visit the DMHAS LiveLOUD website at www.liveloud.org.

 

For more information about National Drug Take Back Day, and to find collection sites across the country, visit the Drug Enforcement Administration’s website here.

 

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Media Contacts:

 

Department of Consumer Protection
Lora Rae Anderson
lorarae.anderson@ct.gov
(860) 713-6019 (office)
(860) 247-8711 (cell)

 

Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services
Diana Shaw
diana.shaw@ct.gov
(860) 418-6967 (office)
(860) 558-0024 (cell)

 

Department of Public Health
Av Harris
av.harris@ct.gov
860-509-7106 (office)
860-250-8391 (cell)

 

Town of West Hartford
Renée B. McCue
Renee@WestHartfordCT.gov
(860) 561-7521 (office)

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