What do you do with un-used or un-wanted medications?
Often times they sit on a shelf or take up space in your medicine cabinet for years.
But today, law enforcement officers across the country are taking steps to change that, including right here in Mid-Michigan.
“To get it out of your house, in a safe way, this is the way to do it,” says Michigan State Police Sgt. Brian Oleksyk.
Sgt. Oleksyk with the Michigan State Police says National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day happens twice a year and gives people the chance to get rid of those old pain-killers or anxiety pills that may be sitting around the house.
“We need to dispose of them properly, instead of just dumping them into the water supply or dumping them into the trash,” says Marilyn Britten.
“We might take them by accident as we get older you never know,” says Judie Siegert.
Sgt. Oleksyk says by turning over un-wanted or expired medication, it not only keeps the environment clean, but also prevents pills from getting into the wrong hands.
“If you have family or friends that are addicted to drugs, and you have a medicine cabinet there, it’s easy access for them for an accidental overdose, a poisoning, and if somebody is addicted to narcotics and it’s prescription, it’s an easy way for access for them to get it,” says Sgt. Oleksyk.
According to a National Survey on Drug Use and Health, in 2015, 6.4 million Americans abused controlled prescription drugs and the majority of them, were taken from the medicine cabinet’s of family and friends.
Which is why Oleksyk believes this initiative is a positive step toward prevention, one that collected 53 lbs worth of un-wanted pills.
Today isn’t the only day you can drop off un-wanted medications.
If you missed out on the event, State Police say there is a drug collection box at almost every local State Police post year round.
Those pills are then given to the DEA for disposal.