(WNY News Now) – The City of Dunkirk Police Department, in collaboration with WCA ALSTAR Ambulance and the DEA, will organize a vital event, National Prescription Drug Drop-Off Day, on Saturday, October 28, 2023, from 10 AM to 2 PM.
Dunkirk -The City of Dunkirk is gearing up for a crucial event in the ongoing battle against prescription drug abuse. On Saturday, October 28, 2023, from 10 AM to 2 PM, the City of Dunkirk Police Department, WCA ALSTAR Ambulance, and the Federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) will jointly coordinate a North County location for National Prescription Drug Drop-Off Day. This event provides an opportunity for the community to safely and responsibly dispose of unused or expired prescription medications.
WCA ALSTAR Ambulance, known for its ongoing commitment to the well-being of the community, has generously offered its North Headquarters as the drop-off location for this event. The ALSTAR North facility is situated behind School #3 at the intersection of Route 60 and Orchard Street in the City of Dunkirk. Importantly, individuals can drop off prescription medications with no questions asked.
This initiative is of paramount importance due to the grave public safety concerns surrounding unused or expired prescription medications. These substances pose risks of accidental poisoning, overdose, and abuse. Shockingly, in many U.S. states, deaths resulting from prescription drug misuse now surpass those caused by motor vehicle accidents, with opiate painkillers such as Vicodin, Percocet, and Oxycontin leading the list of commonly abused prescription drugs. Recent reports indicate a staggering 400% increase in the number of people seeking treatment for painkiller addiction over the past decade. Moreover, one in ten 12th-grade students has engaged in the non-medical use of pharmaceutical narcotic painkillers. Alarmingly, the majority of these teenagers (62%) obtained prescription drugs from family and friends, including medicine cabinets in their own homes. Unintentional overdose deaths stemming from prescription opioids have surged by 175% over a five-year period. Recent statistics highlight that 6.2 million Americans aged 12 and older have abused prescription drugs within the past month, with seven of the ten most commonly abused drugs among teenagers being prescription medicines.
Proper disposal of unused or expired prescription drugs is the cornerstone of this initiative. It eliminates the temptation for abuse and the risk of theft from residences. Additionally, it prevents environmental contamination that can occur if these medications are flushed into sewer systems. Most critically, it contributes to lowering the death rate associated with overdoses and abuse, particularly among children and young adults.
The organizers of National Prescription Drug Drop-Off Day urge community members to take a moment to examine their shelves and cabinets for unused or expired prescription drugs and bring them to the drop-off point at ALSTAR Ambulance, behind School #3 at the intersection of Route 60 and Orchard Street in Dunkirk on Saturday, October 28th, between 10 AM and 2 PM. It is also encouraged to check with parents or grandparents to ensure they, too, dispose of any prescriptions that are no longer needed or have expired. It’s essential to emphasize that this event operates on a drive-in and drop-off basis, with no questions asked.
However, participants should note that liquids and sharps/needles are not accepted at the drop-off location. Furthermore, these items cannot be placed in the Drop Box at the Police Station. These restrictions are in place to ensure the safety of officers handling the items and to maintain the integrity of the disposal process.
National Prescription Drug Drop-Off Day on October 28th offers a significant opportunity for the City of Dunkirk and its residents to contribute to the safety of the community by responsibly disposing of prescription medications.