Last week’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day was a success locally, according to the La Grande Police Department. LGPD collected 67 pounds of prescription drugs for safe disposal Oct. 26 in La Grande. 

“We feel it provides community members a way to dispose of unwanted and unneeded prescription drugs in a safe way,” LGPD Lt. Gary Bell said. “It keeps drugs out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them, and keeps the chemicals out of our wastewater and water tables.” 

LGPD set up a drop box to collect unused prescriptions in 2013 and joined the national campaign sponsored by the DEA in 2018. The national campaign organizes two Take Back Day events every year, in April and October. 

Once collected, and weighed LGPD hands over the medications to the DEA to be safely disposed of. According to Bell, LGPD has collected a total of 283 pounds of prescription medications in 2019. 

“That number shows there is no way to look at it other than a significant success,” Bell said.

In October 2018, La Grande was part of the 914,236 pounds collected nationally, according to the DEA’s website. This year’s national numbers have not been released as of publication. 

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