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Keep Our Communities Safe by Guarding and Discarding Prescription Drugs!

By Eric Baranowski, SUPS Project Lead

Last October’s Drug Take Back event was hosted at the Elk Grove Village Police Department, where participants received a free goodie bag with promotional items and opioid educational materials.

The days are getting longer, the weather is getting warmer, and the flowers are beginning to bloom. Springtime is here! Spring brings us feelings of new beginnings, both in nature and at home. Many people practice spring cleaning around this time, going through their cabinets and drawers to clean out anything they don’t use anymore.

Each year, the Kenneth Young Center encourages the community to also clean out their medicine cabinets and to participate in the DEA’s National Drug Take Back event! Drug Take Back events occur in April and October every year and promote community-wide safe medication practices.

The DEA’s National Drug Take Back event was initiated to bring widespread awareness to the misuse of prescription drugs. According to the 2020 National Survey on Drug Use, 9.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers, 4.9 million people misused prescription stimulants, and 5.9 million people misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives in 2019. The survey also showed a majority of the misused drugs were taken from family and friends, often from their home medicine cabinets.

To prevent future misuse of prescription drugs, we encourage the community to read through some tips below for using prescription drugs and disposing of them safely.

  1. Use prescription drugs properly. Only use prescription drugs as directed by a doctor! This means only use prescription drugs prescribed to you, and do not take more than directed.

  2. Store prescription drugs safely and securely. Store prescription drugs safely in a secure, dry place in your home. Be sure to keep them out of the reach of children.

  3. Dispose unused or expired prescription drugs at your local disposal site. Prescription drugs can be disposed of at disposal sites, including most local police stations and many local pharmacies in our community. Simply bring your unused or expired prescription drugs in a container and drop them in the drop-off box. For a list of locations near you, click here.

Drug Take Back occurs year-round! It is not limited to a couple of days a year in April and October. All of the locations provided with the link above are drop-off locations all year round. Keep in mind individual locations may have their own daily hours.

On Saturday, April 24th, the Kenneth Young Center will be partnering with the Elk Grove Village Police Department from 10 AM to 2 PM handing out free goodies and recovery and opioid educational resources! Community members who come and drop off their prescription drugs in the Elk Grove Village Police Department’s lobby will receive a free goodie bag and will have the chance to be entered to win a gift card. We hope to see you there!

With Spring underway, it is time for the yearly purge of unused and old items around the house, which include unused and expired prescription drugs. Choose to keep the community safe by disposing of your prescription drugs. Join us on Saturday, April 24th, or stop by a location today!


DEA National Rx Take Back Day. (n.d.). Retrieved April 01, 2021, from

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