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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Tennessee

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to Hold 15th Prescription Drug Take-Back Day This Saturday


Memphis, TN – U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant for the Western District of Tennessee will join the Drug Enforcement Administration on April 28, 2018 for its 15th Annual Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. The biannual event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at thousands of collection sites around the country, including here at Kroger, 7615 Highway 70 Bartlett, TN. This one-day event will make it convenient for the public to rid homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

Last October Americans turned in 456 tons (912,305 pounds) of prescription drugs at almost 5,500 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 14 previous Take-Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 8.1 million pounds, more than 4,508 tons of pills. The disposal service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said: "Addressing the opioid crisis in our communities requires a comprehensive approach which includes prevention, education, treatment, and enforcement. The DEA National Prescription Drug Take-Back event allows everyone to participate in prevention and education that promotes public safety, and I encourage all West Tennesseans to turn in your unused, unwanted, and expired medications. Together, we can prevent addiction, injury and death, and educate the public about the dangers of prescription drug abuse."

Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 91 Americans die each day from an opioid overdose. Some painkiller abusers move on to heroin: Four out of five new heroin users started with painkillers.

James Catalano, DEA, Memphis Resident Agent in Charge said, "DEA is committed to making our communities safer by raising public awareness about the dangers of prescription drug abuse. The Prescription Drug Take-Back program will allow Americans to properly and safely dispose of their prescription medication that could otherwise be abused for non-medical purposes. Simply turn in your unused and unneeded medication at any of the numerous designated locations throughout West Tennessee. This is just one example of how DEA is working hand-in-hand with its law enforcement and community partners in an effort to stem the tide of prescription opioid abuse."

For more information or to locate a collection site near you, go to the DEA Prescription Drug Take-Back Day web site at https://takebackday.dea.gov where you can search by zip code, city or state.

Updated April 26, 2018