DEA works to stop drug abuse with Drug Take Back - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

DEA works to stop drug abuse with Drug Take Back

The event is also fighting against the rise in opioid addiction. (Photo source: WLOX) The event is also fighting against the rise in opioid addiction. (Photo source: WLOX)
HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) -

The Drug Enforcement Agency wants to make sure unwanted prescription medications don't get into the wrong hands.

On Saturday they hosted a drug take back day where people could drop off medications in multiple locations across the nation. The program has taken more than 7.1 million pounds of potentially dangerous substances already.

"It's an anonymous thing. You drive up, you give us the bag, we put it in the box," said DEA Gulfport resident agent Derryle Smith. 

DEA agents docked at various locations across South Mississippi, encouraging people to dispose of medications the proper way. 

"Instead of just throwing them in the trash or flushing them down the toilet, we use this event to get rid of them," Smith said. 

According to the Department of Justice, the majority of the 6.4 million Americans who abused controlled prescription drugs in 2015 got the meds from friends and family.

"Drug abusers start a lot of time by going to grandma, mom, dad, aunts uncles medicine cabinets, and taking those drugs out of there," Smith said. "This is just an opportunity to get those away from them."

The event is also fighting against the rise in opioid addiction. 

"The opioid epidemic that we've had in the last 10-12 years have really contributed to a lot of deaths a lot of drug abuse," Smith added. "It's just another way for us to try to fight that epidemic."

Once the day is done, the drugs are packed up and sent to incinerator where they can't get in the wrong hands.

Copyright 2017 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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