Drug Take Back Day yields 1,232 pounds of unwanted medications


The April 28, 2018 National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is a wrap.

Some 311 pounds of unwanted medications were collected in Franklin County and 921 pounds were collected in Hampshire County for a total of 1,232 pounds.

"A big thanks to everyone who participated on this beautiful Spring day. This is an important step in fighting the opioid crisis by keeping drugs out of circulation and from being misused," Northwestern District Attorney said.

The drugs will be incinerated at Covanta Springfield, the Pioneer Valley Resource Recovery Facility where waste is processed to generate renewable energy.

Participating communities, this time, included Amherst, Belchertown, Cummington, Easthampton, Goshen, Northampton, Southampton and Williamsburg in Hampshire County and Ashfield, Deerfield, Greenfield, Leverett and Sunderland in Franklin County.

Keeping prescription drugs out of the hands of children and teenagers is one of the most important objectives of National Prescription Drug Day, as is raising awareness of the opioids addiction public health crisis and ensuring the safety of our elder population. Helping elders clean out their medicine cabinets can help prevent accidental overdoses and the misappropriation of prescription drugs by personal care assistants or loved ones.Most people who misuse prescription drugs get them from friends and family, sometimes without their knowledge. And, according to the latest information from the National Institute on Drug Abuse “about 80 percent of people who use heroin first misused prescription opioids.”

Photos are of DA Sullivan, Dan Carey and Rachel Senecal at JFK Middle School in Northampton and Amherst Police officers at Wildwood Elementary School in Amherst​.