FLEMINGTON, NJ – The majority of abused prescription drugs come from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.

That’s according the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. And the common means of disposing of unused medicines - such as  flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash - pose potential safety and health hazards.

That’s why Saturday has been designated as National Take Back Day. The event aims to provide a safe, convenient and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the public about the potential for abuse of medications. 

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Locally, the event is promoted by a joint coalition that includes Hunterdon County Prosecutor Anthony P. Kearns, III; Chief of Detectives John J. Kuczynski; Hunterdon Sheriff Fred Brown; and Safe Communities Coalition Project Director Lesley Gabel.

The collaborative effort also involves Hunterdon’s  local police departments.

Last year, Take Back Day resulted in a record collection of nearly 600 pounds of unwanted prescription drugs from throughout Hunterdon as residents visited their local collection sites to drop off unused and expired prescription drugs.

 “This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse,” said Kearns. “Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.”

The prosecutor said the event is an opportunity for everyone to do their part “in helping stem the scourge of opioid dependence by making pills less available – the same pills that are often the impetus to a heroin addiction.”

Below are the locations and hours of Hunterdon’s permanent prescription pill drop off box locations:

  • Hunterdon County Justice Center, 65 Park Avenue, Flemington, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Arrangements can be made with Sheriff’s Office for after-hours pick-up.
  • Frenchtown Police Department, 27 Second Street, Frenchtown       
  • Holland Township Police Department, 61 Church Road (back of building), Milford, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Arrangements can be made for after hours. 
  • Lambertville Police Department, 349 North Main Street, Lambertville.      
  • Readington Township Police Department, 507 Route 523, Whitehouse Station.           
  • Tewksbury Police Department, 167 Route 517, Califon.      
  • New Jersey State Police, Perryville Station, 90 Route 173, Hampton.        
  • West Amwell Police Department, 24 Mt. Airy Village Road, West Amwell.