AG Fox Encourages Montanans to Participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day
On Saturday, October 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Montana Department of Justice, local law enforcement agencies, tribal law enforcement agencies, and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its fourteenth opportunity in seven years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of unused prescription drugs.
Montanans are invited to bring their unwanted prescription pills and patches for free, anonymous, no-questions-asked disposal at one of 24 participating collection sites across the state.
“In the previous Take-Back events held in April, over 4,300 pounds of prescription drugs were safely disposed of at 25 collection sites across Montana. While those numbers indicate great participation, I know we can do even better this Saturday,” said Attorney General Tim Fox. “Our state is in the midst of a substance abuse epidemic, and prevention efforts are vital. Prescription drugs that sit in home medicine cabinets are highly susceptible to abuse, misuse, and diversion. I encourage all Montanans to proactively dispose of their unused and expired prescription drugs at a Take-Back Day location on October 28 or at a permanent drug take-back box near them.”
The following items cannot be accepted at the Take-Back events: Illegal drugs, chemotherapy drugs, needles, sharps, mercury (thermometers), oxygen containers, pressurized canisters, and radioactive substances.
Cities hosting Take-Back events include Big Timber, Billings, Bozeman, Browning, Crow Agency, Cut Bank, Dillon, Gardiner, Glendive, Great Falls, Helena, Lame Deer, Lincoln, Miles City, Missoula, Poplar, Roundup, Stevensville, Superior, and Whitefish. To view the details of each event, visit www.dea.gov. This site will be continuously updated with new take-back locations.
Montanans who cannot make it to a Take-Back Day event, or who do not live in one of the cities hosting a Take-Back event, can dispose of their unwanted medications by visiting one of over 50 permanent drug drop box locations across the state. The complete list of permanent drug drop box locations in Montana is available at www.resolvemontana.org.
The National Prescription Drug Take-Back event addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Nationwide, a total of 900,386 pounds, or 450 tons, were brought to 5,498 collection sites on April 29, 2017. Overall, in its 13 previous Take Back events, the DEA and its partners have taken in over 8.1 million pounds—more than 4,050 tons—of pills.
Studies show that many abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, many Americans do not know how to properly dispose of their unused medicine, often flushing them down the toilet or throwing them away; both potential safety and health hazards.
To learn more about substance abuse in Montana, visit the Montana Department of Justice’s Substance Use in Montana Report. For more information about the Attorney General’s Aid Montana: Addressing the Impact of Drugs initiative, click here.