County now offering drug take back box

Published 9:44 pm Wednesday, July 11, 2018

LaFAYETTE — To combat the opioid “epidemic” that has permeated throughout Chambers County, East Alabama Mental Health Prevention Services and the Chambers County Drug Task Force have teamed up for a new project.

Located in the Chambers County Sheriff’s Department in LaFayette is a new Prescription Drug Take Back Box. Now that the ribbon has been cut and it is available to the public, residents of Chambers County and surrounding areas can appropriately dispose of their leftover and unwanted drugs.

“If they have prescription medication they can take it and drop it in the box and no one will ask them any questions about anything,” Chambers County Drug Task Force Project Director Robert Chambers said. “It’s under 24-hour security so nobody will be able to touch it.”

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The box is part of the county’s “mission to reduce the opioid crisis that has been sweeping the county by bringing awareness to the public about prescription drug abuse and the damage it is doing to the communities,” according to a press release.

The county has held drug take back days in the past but, according to Chambers, there has been a need for a place they can drop off drugs at any time. Leftover prescriptions often end up being abused by those who needed them in the first place or those who might have been able to get their hands on them.

“I think it will be a great impact,” he said. “People hold the medications because we do the drug take backs once a year, but now we will give them opportunities to give up the drugs all year long instead of holding on to them. We don’t recommend flushing them or anything and now they can bring them anytime they want to.”

To celebrate its opening and the impact it will have on the county, the Greater Valley Area Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for the collection site this morning.

This new take back box is another stepping stone in the area’s path to eliminating the opioid crisis. This action comes after the City of Lanett joining other Alabama cities in a lawsuit against opioid companies earlier this year.

“The City of Lanett wishes to protect its citizens as much as it is reasonably possible from deceptive and unfair marketing practices and illegal and inappropriate selling and distribution of opioids which are ravaging the citizens of the City of Lanett and burdening the city with increasing monetary and societal costs, thus fueling a growing crisis in our city
and state,” said a city proclamation in April.