Niagara Gazette

Local News

October 6, 2012

OUR VIEW: Take-back program is a hit

Niagara Gazette — Another drug take back day has passed and once again thousands of pounds of unwanted or expired prescriptions were turned in to authorities to be disposed of in a proper manner. 

The event is designed to curb prescription drug abuse and reduce the amount of poisons that enter the environment. This is an excellent program that we hope doesn’t go away any time soon.

We don’t have official numbers from the fifth National Prescription Drug Take Back Day event — held on Sept. 29 — but based on previous event’s statistics from local agencies, we’re sure it was a success.

Throughout Western New York, the most recent local Take Back Initiative saw six tons of medication dropped off. That translates to over 18 million pills.

Since the program began in 2010, each initiative has seen a dramatic increase in the size of the drop offs. The first drop-off saw about two tons worth of pills.

It’s pretty obvious why the program is needed.

According to The Partnership at, one in six teens has used a prescription drug in order to get high or to change their mood, and two-thirds of teens who abuse pain relievers say they get them from family members and friends.

That means one of two things: Either parents are turning a blind eye, or they need to put a padlock on the medicine cabinet. In any event, the numbers of teenagers abusing prescription drugs is staggering.

As for the environment, simply flushing unwanted medicine and drugs down the toilet — a practice used for decades — is not encouraged in some circles; recent studies have noted trace amounts of medicines in the water system.

The FDA acknowledges this, reporting that “flushing contributes only a small fraction of the total amount of medicine found in the water,” with most coming from natural bodily removal. Still, the FDA suggests flushing only “when a medicine take-back program isn’t available.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
House Ads
AP Video
Bon Jovi Helps Open Low-income Housing in Philly Pipeline Opponents Protest on National Mall Hagel Gets Preview of New High-tech Projects S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart New Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees Named 'Piles' of Bodies in South Sudan Slaughter New Yorkers Celebrate Cherry Blossom Blooms SCOTUS Hears Tv-over-Internet Case Justice Dept. Broadening Criteria for Clemency Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers 'Miss Meadows' Takes Holmes Back to Her Roots Biden: Russia Must Stop Talking, Start Acting David Moyes Out As Manchester United Manager Raw: Leopard Bites Man in India Iowa College Finds Beauty in Bulldogs High Court to Hear Dispute of TV Over Internet Stowaway Teen Forces Review of Airport Security
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page

Do you think cigarette sales to non-Native American customers should be taxed on reservations?

Yes. Items should be taxed like they are everywhere else.
No, the indian reservations are sovereign land and they are selling them on their land.
Not up to me. Native Americans decide the rules on their land.
Don't care. Smoking isn't good for you.
     View Results