South Pasadena Police Department Wants Your Drugs

Bring any unused prescription medication to the police department, 1422 Mission St., South Pasadena, Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.


Got drugs? 

Perhaps a leftover prescription from when Aunt Gladys visited for a week, or just some icky antibiotics the cat never finished. Whatever your unused medications may be, you need to dispose of them properly - and that doesn't mean flush them down a toilet or drop them in a trashcan.

On Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the South Pasadena PD (SPPD) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will take the public's potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. Bring the meds to SPPD – 1422 Mission St. South Pasadena – Courtyard at City Hall Facility. The service is free and anonymous, and no questions will be asked, according to a SPPD press release. 

Last April, Americans turned in 552,161 pounds—276 tons—of prescription drugs at over 5,600 sites operated by the DEA and nearly 4,300 state and local law enforcement personnel, the release states. In its four previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners took in over 1.5 million pounds—nearly 775 tons—of pills.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue, the release states. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse.

Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Authorities say studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, many snatched right from the home medicine cabinet. Further, it is advised that a once-thought safe method for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—pose potential safety and health hazards.

In 2010, Congress passed the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act. It amends the Controlled Substances Act to allow an “ultimate user” of controlled substance medications to dispose of them by delivering them to entities authorized to accept them by the Attorney General.

The Act also allows the Attorney General to authorize long term care facilities to dispose of their residents’ controlled substances in certain instances. DEA is drafting regulations to implement the Act. However, until new regulations are in place, local law enforcement agencies like SPPD and the DEA will continue to hold prescription drug take-back events every few months.

Ron Rosen September 28, 2012 at 01:19 PM
Remove the labels before you bring them.
Janet Cartwright September 28, 2012 at 02:55 PM
I'd be glad to give those cops some of my Prozac ;-)
Donna Evans September 28, 2012 at 09:33 PM
@Ron - Hi. Do you recommend that because you think authorities will track who brings in what meds? I ended up taking all the boxes of my birth dad's un-used morphine back to the pharmacy. I wonder if the cops would've raised an eyebrow?
Ron Rosen September 28, 2012 at 10:51 PM
No. I read that you should take the labels off so people can't find the prescription numbers and your name, number, etc. I think this was more if you're throwing the containers in your trash after flushing the drugs.
Ron Rosen September 28, 2012 at 10:52 PM
No, I don't think the authorities would raise an eyebrow about any drugs that were brought in.


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