Got drugs? The KPD will take them



For more than a decade, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has been sponsoring a program called Operation Take Back, designed to safely dispose of drugs turned over by the citizenry. This Saturday, law enforcement agencies around New Jersey will once again participate, and among them will be the Kearny Police Department.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the public can bring unused, unwanted and/or expired drugs — both prescription and over-the-counter — to the KPD’s Juvenile Aid Bureau. Its offices are on Forest St., around the corner from the police headquarters’ main entrance.

Bring the drugs upstairs to the bureau, where a collection bin will be placed for your convenience. And, in case you’re wondering, this is a “no questions asked” operation, Sgt. Adriano Marques assured The Observer.

Following the day’s collection, the drugs will be transported to a DEA site, where they will be destroyed by that agency, “with no harm to the environment — or any person or animal,” Marques said.

(His remark was in response to our — only half-joking — observation that we were hesitant to just flush old drugs down the toilet lest Passaic River fish get foggy-brained.)

Indeed, some drugs can adversely affect waterways if they survive the sewage-treatment process. But the prime reason the DEA launched Operation Take Back was the very real, and increasingly common, danger that prescription drugs were being used by individuals other than the person whose name was on the Rx bottle.

Prescription painkillers, for instance, have been known to disappear from medicine cabinets, including the medicine cabinets of people whose kids or grandkids have been visiting.

Meds can also pose a hazard when simply tossed in the trash, where children, and pets, can find them. So, better safe than sorry. Be they prescriptions or over-the-counter, the safest way to get rid of yours is to bring them to the Take Back collection bin. And don’t forget to check all your meds’ expiration dates; odds are you’ll find some that are outdated.

You don’t have to be a Kearny resident to drop off drugs this Saturday at the KPD, but readers from other towns might want to check with their local police to see if they are also participating in this week’s collection.

For further information on the KPD Operation Take Back, call 201-998-1313, ext. 2825.

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