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Grand Island Police take part in National Take Back Day

Published: Oct. 23, 2021 at 9:26 PM CDT
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - The DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back Day went on Saturday. People around the country were able to find locations where they could take their unused or expired medications to be properly disposed of.

The Grand Island Police Department teamed up with the Prevention Project to take part in the national event. Jason Wood, crime prevention officer for GIPD, was out at Super Saver, Five Points in Grand Island collecting any excess prescriptions people had sitting around.

“It’s been going pretty good,” Wood said. “We got quite a bit of medication in the first hour. A lot of people brought in a whole bunch of stuff.”

He added, they had been taking part in the movement for the past four to five years because of the success they had seen, to help get rid of the unneeded prescriptions people had and because of the convivence it offers to the community.

Local coalition, the Prevention Project, that helped to eliminate addiction in Hall county worked along with GIPD Saturday. Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator, Katie Usasz, said people should be alert to the impacts prescription drugs can have on people around them.

“One of the biggest myths people fall for is, ‘Not my friends, not my kids, not my family, they would never do that,’” Usasz said. “Unfortunately, the disease of addiction is one that doesn’t discriminate, that it can affect absolutely anyone.”

Even after the National Take Back Day, Usasz said there are still ways people can get rid of the excess medications.

“When you’re done with a medication, you had back surgery two months ago and that pain medication is still sitting on your shelf; What do you do with it? We have disposal packets at the prevention project, where you’re able to purchase, available for anyone in Hall county who would like to get rid of medication safely,” she continued.

Officer Wood said, about three years ago when they participated in national day, they ended up with 225lbs. of prescription medications they then turned over to the DEA. As of 11:30 a.m. Saturday, he estimated they had already collected 70-80lbs. of medications.

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