The Berkeley Heights Police Department will be hosting an Operation Take Back New Jersey local collection site as part of the Operation Take Back NJ medicine disposal day. The event will take place at the Berkeley Heights Police Department Headquarters, 29 Park Avenue, between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday, September 25, 2010. This initiative, open to all residents, was organized to encourage local community residents to properly dispose of their unused, unwanted and expired medicine.
Last year, the Berkeley Heights Police Department, in conjunction with the Mountainside Police Department, was able to collect approximately 15 pounds of medicine that was turned in by local residents. Capt. Michael Mathis, of the Berkeley Heights Police Department stated, "We are pleased to be participating once again in this statewide effort and are encouraging those residents who have unwanted and expired medicines to feel free to stop by the Police Department to dispose of those items."
This statewide effort, with the majority of New Jersey police departments participating, is being spearheaded by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) New Jersey Division, the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General, the New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police, the NY/NJ HIDTA, and the New Jersey National Guard. Residents looking for information on the program and local collection sites should visit www.operationtakebacknj.com.
Recent studies by Monitoring the Future, University of Michigan, show that between 1997 and 2007, treatment admissions for prescription painkillers increased more than 400 percent. In addition, between 2004 and 2008, the number of visits to hospital emergency departments involving the non-medical use of narcotic painkillers increased 111 percent. The proper disposal of unwanted medication will help reduce the potential for pharmaceutical diversion.
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