The following comes from the Mt. Laurel Police Department:
For too many New Jerseyans, addiction begins in the medicine cabinet. Mt. Laurel Police Department partnered with the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs and Project Medicine Drop in an effort to halt the abuse and diversion of prescription drugs.
Project Medicine Drop allows consumers to dispose of unused and expired medications anonymously, seven days a week, 365 days a year, at “prescription drug drop boxes” located within the headquarters of participating police departments.
A prescription drug drop box is now located in the lobby of Mt. Laurel Police Headquarters, 100 Mt. Laurel Road.
The Police lobby is open Monday — Friday (8 a.m.-10 p.m.), weekends and holidays (9 a.m.- 6 p.m.)
The drop box accepts household medications only, to include pills, capsules, patches, liquids in a secure container to prevent spillage, and pet medications.
The medication may remain in their original packaging, such as bottles and boxes, when deposited in the drop box. Syringes are not accepted.
Mt. Laurel Police will maintain custody of the deposited drugs, and dispose of them according to our normal procedures for the custody and destruction of controlled dangerous substances.
The Mt. Laurel Police Department describes the facts and statistics about prescription drug abuse as staggering:
-Every day, 40 Americans die from an overdose caused by prescription painkiller abuse, according to the U.S. Centers of Disease Control. Overdoses of opioid prescription drugs now kill more people in the U.S. than heroin and cocaine combined.
-Two in five teenagers mistakenly believe prescription drugs are “much safer” than illegal drugs, according to the DEA, and three in 10 teens mistakenly believe prescription painkillers are not addictive.
-In the United States, every day 2,500 youths take a prescription pain reliever for the purpose of getting high for the very first time, according to the Office of National Drug Control Policy.
-The US Drug Enforcement Administration reports that prescription drugs, including opioids and antidepressants, are responsible for more overdose deaths than “street drugs” such as cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamines.
-The number of American teenagers and adults who abuse prescription drugs is greater than those who use cocaine, hallucinogens, and heroin combined, according to the 2009 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, compiled by the US Department of Health and Senior Services.
-In June 2011, the New Jersey State Commission of Investigation reported that a growing number of young people are abusing prescription drugs, and noted a significant trend in which the practice has led to increases, not only in the number of young people addicted to painkillers, but to the number of young people using heroin as well.