Rep. Geran Tarr

Senator Johnny Ellis and Representative Geran Tarr Urge Neighbors to Properly Dispose of Unneeded Prescription Drugs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 28, 2016

Juneau – Senator Johnny Ellis (D-Anchorage) and Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage) are encouraging Anchorage residents to participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day this Saturday, April 30, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. 

This initiative aims to educate the general public about the potential for abuse of prescription medication and provide an opportunity for safe disposal of unused prescription medications.

“The abuse of prescription medication, narcotics, and opioids is a serious public health concern in Alaska,” said Rep. Tarr.  “What is shocking is a report from the U.S. government stating that 70 percent of people who abuse prescription medication acquire the medication from their friends, relatives, or simply take them without asking.  Providing a safe way for disposal is another tool to combat abuse.”

According to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), roughly one in 10 people aged 12 or older engaged in illicit drug use in the past 30 days.  This includes 4.3 million people aged 12 or older who reported current “nonmedical” use of prescription pain relievers.

“With easy to get to locations like Fred Meyer, I hope my neighbors will take the time to look in their medicine cabinet and find the expired, unused, and unneeded prescription medications they have,” said Sen. Ellis.  “Leaving potentially dangerous medications around the house without keeping an eye on them is how addicts and users take advantage of unsuspecting friends and family.  This simple task of cleaning up can literally save lives.”

There are two locations to drop off unneeded prescription drugs in Anchorage:

  • Fred Meyer at 7701 DeBarr Road
  • Fred Meyer at 2300 Abbot Road (at Lake Otis Parkway)

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) began hosting National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day in 2010.  Since then, over 5.5 million pounds prescription medication have been surrendered for safe and proper disposal.  This service is free and participants will be kept anonymous.

For more information about the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Initiative, please contact Alaska Independent Democratic Coalition Press Secretary Mike Mason at (907) 444-0889.

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