Shaheen Encourages Granite State Participation in National Drug Take-Back Day

Touts Drug Disposal as Way for Citizens to Fight Back Against Opioid Abuse Epidemic

September 25, 2015

(Washington, DC)Tomorrow, Saturday September 26th, communities across New Hampshire and the country are teaming up with local law enforcement for the tenth annual National Drug Take-Back Day to dispose of unneeded prescription drugs. This event, hosted nationally by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), serves as an important reminder of the services many local law enforcement agencies provide year-round to properly dispose of prescription drugs, especially highly addictive opioid painkillers like OxyContin and Vicodin. Today, Senator Shaheen touted the merits of the program and encouraged all Granite Staters to participate.

“Fighting the opioid abuse epidemic is an all-hands-on-deck moment for New Hampshire,” said Shaheen. “Removing these prescriptions from your home can help safeguard your family and community. Let’s all pitch in and each do our part to win the fight against heroin and opioid abuse.”

“In my interviews with heroin addicts,” said Jack Wozmak, New Hampshire Senior Director for Substance Misuse and Behavioral Health. “90 percent reported that their addiction started with unused opioids belonging to others, which is why these drugs need to be removed from circulation.”

"Many Americans are not aware that medicines which languish in home cabinets are highly vulnerable to diversion, misuse, and abuse," said Michael J. Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England.  "Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are at alarming rates, as are the number of accidental poisoning and overdoses due to the illegal use of these drugs. Please take the time to clean out your medicine cabinet and make your home safe from drug theft and abuse."

The public can find their nearest drop-off location by going to the US Drug Enforcement Administration’s website: www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback. Tomorrow, New Hampshire will have more than 90 drop-off sites located around the state and 45 that operate year-round. Last year, New Hampshire law enforcement collected 6,222 pounds of prescription drugs on National Drug Take-Back Day.