Town Council Member and Sparta Municipal Alliance Chairperson, Molly Whilesmith and Sparta Police Corporal Susan Parkes stand next to the new “Project Medicine Drop Box” that is now located in the lobby of the Sparta Police Department. Prescription painkiller overdoses now kills more people in the U.S. than heroin or cocaine combined. Citizens can now legally dispose of unused medications at these drop boxes, 24-hours per day, seven days per week, 365 days per year. Credits: Courtesy of the Sparta Police Department
December 27, 2012 at 8:44 PM
The Sparta Township Police Department is the latest Law Enforcement Agency to join “Project Medicine Drop.” Thanks to the efforts of Sparta Town Council Member and Chairperson for the Sparta Municipal Alliance, Molly Whilesmith. Sparta Police Corporal Susan Parkes who is also a Municipal Alliance member will oversee the management of the project
The Project Medicine Drop boxes are lockable, metal containers, resembling mailboxes and are installed at select New Jersey Police Departments, Sheriff’s Offices and State Police Barracks. The boxes enable consumers to drop off their unused or excess medications safely and securely, with Law Enforcement Agencies authorized to take custody of controlled dangerous substances. There is now in the lobby of the Sparta Police Department such a drop box.
The program helps keep prescription drugs from falling into the hands of those who might make them available for abuse and prevents them from being flushed into the water supply or thrown into the trash where they could contaminate the environment.
New Jersey Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa and the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs announced via a Press Release on September 20, 2012 the expansion of “Project Medicine Drop.” Attorney General Chiesa stated, members of the public are invited to come in and use the Project Medicine Drop Sites 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, to dispose of their unused and expired prescription medications.
Citizens wishing to utilize any of these Medicine Drop Boxes are advised that the following items are not to be put in these designated drop boxes;
- NO MAIL
- NO TRASH
- NOTHING LIQUID
- NO SYRINGES
“Nationwide, more than 70 percent of people who abuse prescription drugs obtain them from friends or relatives,” Attorney General Chiesa said. “We are fighting this problem with a multi-tiered approach that involves law enforcement, our New Jersey Prescription Monitoring Program, and engagement with the healthcare community. It must also involve the participation of all New Jersey citizens. With this program we encourage you to take responsibility for the medications in your home and safely dispose of those you no longer need.”
Here some prescription medication Facts to think about;
· The number of admissions to New Jersey addiction treatment programs due to prescription drug abuse, rose by 200 percent over the past five years and 700 percent over the past decade
· Prescription painkiller overdoses now kills more people in the U.S. than heroin and cocaine combined.
· Two in five teenagers mistakenly believe prescription drugs are “much safer” than illegal drugs.
· In a growing trend, New Jersey teens who abused prescription drugs went on to be come addicted and turned to heroin use.
SOURCES: Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration(SAMHSA); U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration; New jersey State Commission of Investigation.