Sheriff Wants Unwanted Pills

On April 28, 2012 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Clarke County Sheriff’s Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public another opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.  Bring your medications for disposal to John H. Enders Fire Company at 9 South Buckmarsh Street, Berryville, Virginia.

The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

Last October, Americans turned in 377,080 pounds—188.5 tons—of prescription drugs at over 5,300 sites operated by the DEA and nearly 4,000 state and local law enforcement partners.  In its three previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners took in almost a million pounds—nearly 500 tons—of pills.

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. 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.  Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.

Four days after the first event, Congress passed the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, which amends the Controlled Substances Act to allow an “ultimate user” of controlled substance medications to dispose of them by delivering them to entities authorized by the Attorney General to accept them.  The Act also allows the Attorney General to authorize long term care facilities to dispose of their residents’ controlled substances in certain instances.  DEA is drafting regulations to implement the Act, a process that can take as long as 24 months.  Until new regulations are in place, local law enforcement agencies like Clarke County Sheriff’s Office and the DEA will continue to hold prescription drug take-back events every few months.

Any questions may be directed to Sergeant Travis M. Sumption, 540-955-5152

Comments

  1. Another View says:

    Heavens! Whatever did folks do with unused drugs before this program? THANK GOODNESS the government is stepping in to help folks who are incapable of figuring things out for themselves!

  2. jennifer says:

    haha, yes, well AV, they are trying to get the extra’s eliminated before someone does figure out what to do with them by themselves. Guess you would rather pay for the cops, judges and jails that would house the perpetrators that would take advantage of those extra drugs. Or do you just believe that anyone ought to be able to play with whatever drugs they wish, in whatever manner they wish?

    • Another View says:

      I believe that man is free to ingest whatever he wants. The drug laws are an unwarranted infringement of liberty.

      • Kenny Gall says:

        Interesting…. So you think that the Sheriff is infringing on your rights because he has made it available to the public on a voluntary basis to turn in unwanted and unused drugs… “key word — voluntary”

        an infringement of your right would be for him to kick your door in a take them against your will….

        Furthermore the drug laws are a unwarranted infringement of liberty? so Heroine, Crack, and pcp should be legal?

        I think you should look in your medicine cabinet an possible see if you can find some old pills for you paranoia and blood pressure…

  3. Sam Card says:

    This program is a good way for people to safely get rid of their unnecessary pills. It is my opinion that we are an overmedicated society. Unused pills of chemicals that are flushed down the toilet contribute to water pollution.

  4. DAWN PRICE says:

    I THINK THIS IS GOOD FOR THE OLDER PEOPLE .DR.”S GIVE THEM SO MANY PILLS THEY MAY NOT KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH THEM AND ALL THE PAIN PILLS YOU NEVER KNOW WHO IS JUST WATCHING AT THE PHARMACY . MY OLDER NEIGHBORS HAD SO MUCH OXI IT IS A GOOD THING .

    • Another View says:

      The purpose of government is NOT to take care of us, be we old, young, or in between. The purpose of government is to preserve liberty.

      If an elderly person cannot manage their pills, then it is up to their family members, friends, or neighbors to assist them. It is NOT up to the government.

      We do not need a nanny state to provide for us. We are Americans.

      • Sunshine says:

        Fine, Another View
        then…
        As Americans we have the liberty/freedom/independence to choose whether or not we utilize a provided, secure disposal location for unused prescriptions with the caring family member driving the elderly person to that site, so the prescriptions are not consumed or sold by younger/other family members or by theft, possibly causing an overdose or death.

        Then with smiles of an accomplishment long overdue, they drive on for ice cream and look at the beautiful countryside.

        Seriously AV, take a chill pill (pun intended).

        • Another View says:

          Seriously Sunshine, if we do not stop, and immediately begin reversing our decline into a European socialist nanny state, it will be too late. It is not government’s role to take care of one’s every need; indeed, one has a responsibility to take care of one’s self, in all respects. That is America.

  5. DAWN PRICE says:

    I AM FOR ANYTHING TO KEEP THE DRUGS OUT OF THE HANDS THAT IT DOES NOT BELONG IN . IF IT SAVES A CHILD OR AN ADULT ALL FOR IT . AND THANKS SHERIFFS OFFICE FOR THIS SERVICE .

    • Another View says:

      Why would you assume that if the Sheriff’s program is not in effect, that the user will mishandle his drugs, or permit them to land in the hand’s of children? Have we come to the point where we assume that no one can take care of their own affairs? If so, the children are in deep, deep trouble. So are the adults!

  6. A good program idea for sure. Especially for the elderly who may be over medicated. As for the stealing of drugs from someone’s bathroom cabintet I sould suggest that any drug (and I am assuming narcotics of some sort)be place in a safer locked up space. My question is after these drugs are collected what happens to them? If I go and turn in a bottle of unfinished anitbiotics do these pills get recycled to areas that are needed. Doctors without doors for an example. Of course we know to remove our name from the prescription bottle as to remain anonymous but we need to keep the type of drug and dosage available on the bottle. I for one do not want children or adults taking away prescription needs of another person by stealing them. On the other side I do not want those that are desperately in need of them to lose the ability ot being able to recieve them from their Doctor. Then again I have to ask the question? When we turn these pills over or take them out of what we think is an overmedicated person do we approach the prescribing doctor first to make sure all is correct. Yes I do throw away unused drugs. Blood pressure,pills,anitbiotics,cholesterol pills as my doctor makes changes to dosage. Also cough syrup that has sat around for along time. So a great service by the sherriff;s office for sure. Just a little more detail please because I would love to see these throw away drugs be used for the ones that cannot afford them.

  7. DAWN PRICE says:

    ONE I NEVER ASSUME ANYTHING , AND YOUR NEGATIVE THOUGHTS ARE TO YOURS . I AM JUST SAYING KIDS KNOW MORE THAN I DID WHEN I WAS MY CHILDREN AGES AND THEY DO TALK ABOUT KIDS DOING DRUGS , THIS IS IN MIDDLE SCHOOL .. SO IF I CAN HELP I WILL AND I DO NOT THINK THIS IS DOING ANYONE ANY WRONG BUT COULD HELP IN THE END EFFECT. AND I WOULD NOT ASSUME EVERYONE CAN TAKE CARE OF THEMSELVES , EVERYONE NEEDS HELP EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE …. AGAIN THIS IS JUST MY VIEW AND IF YOU DO NOT LIKE WHAT I HAVE TO TYPE DO NOT READ WHAT I TYPE .. SAFETY IS MY MAIN CONCERN FOR ALL AGES …

    • Another View says:

      I have no negative thoughts. I believe in people, in the individual’s greatness, and ability to achieve, without government. This country was built by rugged individualism, and maximum freedom for all. When we engage in the practices of the nanny state, we sap the individual’s strength, hurting both him and society. I believe in liberty, and want it for everyone!

      • This country was also founded by royal decree to find gold, a shorter passage to the riches of the Orient, and the conquest of the natives, with a few special charters for those of a different religious tradition (Puritans, Quakers, Shakers, etc.) to get them out of Anglican England. During the Revolution, the individuals and the several sovereign states weren’t enough to knock off the British; it took a united government (with help from German and French allies) to do so. Back then, the only ones who enjoyed “maximum freedom” were white men who owned property.

        Yes, individuals moved into the frontier territories and carved out their claims…but they also called out to the government for help when the natives got restless, too. They used the force of law and dubious treaties to uproot native villages and shuffle them off west to crappy lands. They used laws to enslave others, denying “maximum freedom” to women and minorities (often in the name of God) until the Supreme Court or other higher authorities changed those hurtful laws. Was Washington leading the “nanny state” when he put down the Whiskey Rebellion? Was Lincoln repping the “nanny state” when he had the audacity to issue the Emancipation Proclamation and override those individual slaveholders in the South and free their workforce? Was “Ike” running a nanny state when he ordered the National Guard to escort those black children to school so they could gain access to the same education as their white peers? Were New Deal programs like the CCC, the TVA, and other efforts the “nanny state” run amok? How about the FDA and its safe food and water efforts? Speed limits and other vehicle regulations?

        Honestly…you toss off the “individual is sovereign” mantra so much you seemingly willfully and glibly overlook what has been done in the name of “individual liberty” in our history. This program by the DEA and the Sheriff’s department is in no way, shape, or form a “mandate” requiring anyone to participate; it’s voluntary, as in you the individual may choose to drop off those meds or not.

        • Another View says:

          The New Deal programs were indeed the nanny state run amok! Same with the FDA. None are constitutional (the federal Constitution), and impede and infringe upon liberty. And these programs are pushing this country off the fiscal cliff. Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are unconstitutional, unsustainable and destined for the ash heap of history.

          This drug program by the Sheriff and the DEA is symptomatic of the nanny state. No, it is not mandatory, but it is run on the same assumption; that is, government must do and provide for the people. And that is wrong. People should do and provide for themselves.

          You don’t have to go back too far. What did people do in the 80s and 90s without this program? Were we more capable of disposing of our own drugs then, than now? Are we really so helpless that we need to throw tax dollars at this issue? If so, I fear for our country’s future.

          • Fly on the wall says:

            Hmmm…let’s compare the FDA with what the Constitution says:

            What does FDA do? FDA is responsible for

            * Protecting the public health by assuring that foods are safe, wholesome, sanitary and properly labeled; human and veterinary drugs, and vaccines and other biological products and medical devices intended for human use are safe and effective;
            * Protecting the public from electronic product radiation;
            * Assuring cosmetics and dietary supplements are safe and properly labeled;
            * Regulating tobacco products;
            * Advancing the public health by helping to speed product innovations;
            * Helping the public get the accurate science-based information they need to use medicines, devices, and foods to improve their health.
            FDA’s responsibilities extend to the 50 United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and other U.S. territories and possessions.”
            http://www.fda.gov/AboutFDA/Transparency/Basics/ucm194877.htm

            The DEA:
            “The mission of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is to enforce the controlled substances laws and regulations of the United States and bring to the criminal and civil justice system of the United States, or any other competent jurisdiction, those organizations and principal members of organizations, involved in the growing, manufacture, or distribution of controlled substances appearing in or destined for illicit traffic in the United States; and to recommend and support non-enforcement programs aimed at reducing the availability of illicit controlled substances on the domestic and international markets.”
            http://www.justice.gov/dea/agency/mission.htm

            From the U.S. Constitution:
            “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” – The Preamble

            Powers of Congress: “To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.” – from Article I, Sec. 8.

            So…despite the lather you regularly work yourself into, agencies such as the FDA and the DEA would seem to meet the following goals set out in the Preamble to our venerable Constitution:
            *Promote the General Welfare – by affording an opportunity to legally dispose of narcotics and
            other meds that might otherwise be a temptation to someone;
            * Secure the blessings of Liberty to Ourselves and Our Posterity – obviously, if folks become
            addicted to these or other meds, their ability to function as a full
            member of society, to pursue their rights to Life, Liberty, and the
            Pursuit of Happiness, and to fully enjoy the blessings of Liberty
            are hindered or outright negated.

            So…while you are certainly free to continue to rail against such things as a misbeguided libertarian Lorax, you really should just dial it down a few notches and stop looking for bogeymen behind every bush.

          • Fly…you have a poor understanding of the Constitution.

            Quoting Madison on “General Welfare”…

            “But what colour can the objection have, when a specification of the objects alluded to by these general terms, immediately follows; and is not even separated by a longer pause than a semicolon. . . . Nothing is more natural or common than first to use a general phrase, and then to explain and qualify it by a recital of particulars.”

            He also said in Congress…with regard to “general welfare”

            ““was limited to acts laying taxes for them; and the general purposes themselves were limited and explained by the particular enumeration subjoined. To understand these terms in any sense, that would justify the power in question, would give to Congress an unlimited power; would render nugatory the enumeration of particular powers; would supercede all the powers reserved to the state governments.”

            If the term “general welfare” can mean whatever you think it means then why did the document include enumerated powers. It’s a limiting document with powers specifically prescribed. If you are correct in your interpretation, then there is no need at all for a constitution…rather it could just say the “general government” can do whatever is necessary to promote the “general welfare” of the U.S.

            Most with an ounce of common sense and a modest amount of study of the ratification process can arrive at the conclusion “general welfare” does not mean congress can do “whatever we want to”…yet this is what has happened. And if you study the ratification process you’ll find that many were worried of exactly this situation which you promote.

          • Fly on the wall says:

            No, Congress can’t do all that it wants, because the Supreme Court does have judicial review and has used its duly prescribed power several times in our history to weigh in on such cases as have been brought to it – rather head-scratchingly so in the “Keno” decision but it’s there nonetheless.

            So, dirk, not sure what your real issue is here, since we’re actually not in disagreement on the main point. But, I’m sure it must be comforting to AV to know that he’s not alone on his island.

          • Another View says:

            The Congress cannot do all that it wants because of the Constitution. And the Constitution’s Preamble does not empower the Congress to do anything. Article I, Section 8 sets forth Congress’s enumerated powers. There is nothing in those enumerated powers which would permit about 2/3 of what the federal government does today.

          • Fly on the wall says:

            Never said the Preamble empowered any branch of government. Rather, they are 6 goals which the 3 branches of our federal government, duly set up via the laws passed by the Congress and executed by the president and his/her branch and which are vetted for Constitutional validity through the proper legal channels overseen by the SCOTUS, strive to meet. Is it a perfect system? Nope. But…for 232 years it’s been the best game in town, globally speaking.

            Now….if you REALLY wanna get your name in the press…go ahead and file some sort of lawsuit challenging the constitutional standing of the FDA, or the DEA, or whatever agency you so clearly loathe. Challenge a law or regulation, then challenge the legal standing of said law or of the agency enforcing said law, and see where that gets you. Who knows? Maybe you’re just the case the SCOTUS has been waiting on to gut the federal bureaucracy. Or, maybe…just maybe…you’ll realize that you’re barking up the wrong tree and that perhaps the FDA, the DEA, and other agencies – while certainly fallible – do a lot more good than ill. I doubt you will, but one never knows…

            What we do know is that you have yet to specifically address or rebut any point I or others have made. You merely parrot your libertarian bumper stickers.

          • Another View says:

            Actually, I am involved in the types of legal actions you mention every day. Look for Obamacare to fall soon.

            But let us assume it does not–so what? It is still unconstitutional; the Court will have merely failed in its duty.

            Your points have been refuted, by the Constitution’s clear language and meaning. Read it, as it is a fascinating document.

          • AV, it seems that “FLY” used the very words of the Constitution you lift up to support HIS points. Your trite claim that those things are unconstitutional – with no explanation why other than “the Constitution doesn’t say so” is about as weak a Constitutional law argument as can be muttered. Your saying it ain’t so doesn’t make it “ain’t so.” It’s been, what, 232 years since that document was signed? Seems Mr. Madison et al. wrote it with language broad enough to encompass those things that they could not even envision at that time. That, to me, is one of the marvels of the document (which, for the record, I have read in its entirety).

          • FLY – you are in part correct…I don’t have a problem with a drug disposal effort, there is worse they could be doing.

            And there is most definitely a place for government…just not the amount we have.

          • FLY…you forgot one…the GSA. What a fine job they are doing.

          • I have to laugh…negative votes for a comment regarding the GSA??? Are there those of you foolish enough to believe the GSA is an example of efficient government??

          • AV…I must agree with you. It’s amazing to me the amount of people who are scared to be responsible for their own lives.

            “Please bureaucrats and almighty Washington…please help us…we don’t know what to do..”

        • FDR and many of his programs have done more harm to this country then probably any other president in the history of the US.

          People have a responsibility…not government.

  8. I guess people in the 80’s & 90’s put the medicine in the toliet or trash. What do you suggest we do with outdated drugs?

  9. DAWN PRICE says:

    Another option is to check for approved state and local collection alternatives such as community based household hazardous waste collection programs.
    Participate in the DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back Day on Saturday April 28, 2012. Visit the NATIONAL TAKE BACK INITIATIVE site for more information.

  10. Clarke Life says:

    Cannot wait to support OBAMA for another 4 years.

  11. Why do people endure to blindly continue sending more and more of their money to Washington only to have it squandered??

    Perhaps I should be honest and realize half the folks are simply voting to have MY money sent to Washington only to have it squandered.

  12. Another View says:

    [redacted] The Constitution is an express grant of power. If it is not in the Constitution, then the federal government cannot do it!

    • Fly on the wall says:

      AV…Mr. Madison and the others purposefully used all-encompassing words like “all laws which are necessary and proper” to live out the powers granted and meet the reasons and goals set forth in the Preamble (read it…there are 6 of them). Thus, they built in the ability of the Constitution to adapt to the continued life of this great country…something you clearly refuse to accept.

      As Fred and others pointed out, too…if something is challenged in court and ruled unconstitutional by the SCOTUS, then that, too is the proper progression of things. Until something is either eliminated by a new law, or shuttered by an executive order, or rendered unconstitutional by the SCOTUS, no amount of exclamation points after your rantings changes the established fact that such agencies and entities have legal standing and thus are legit. Your opinion might be different than that, but that doesn’t change the facts.

      • Another View says:

        Not so; here’s an example.

        Congress passes a law establishing a national church. President signs law. Citizen challenges law as violating Constitution, an Supreme Court rules 9-0 in favor of the law. All 3 branches agree.

        The law is still unconstitutional, illegitimate and invalid. No citizen is obliged to abide by it.

        • Fly on the wall says:

          Nice try, if lame. Your example would never see the light of day to BE signed by the president, so you wasted those pixels.

          As to your last sentence – yes, you’re obliged to abide by ALL of the laws of the country. However, if you CHOOSE to not do so, then you CHOOSE to accept the legal consequences of that action. Maybe you’d win in court, but probably not. You have your opinion, flawed as it is, but that does not supercede the rule of law.

          • Another View says:

            Well if I had only known to read this blog in order to learn the law and the Constitution, I could have saved myself the trouble of 36 years of legal practice!

          • Stonebroke says:

            Practice must be slow with all the time spent debating this topic!

      • FLY said this….
        “Thus, they built in the ability of the Constitution to adapt to the continued life of this great country…something you clearly refuse to accept.”

        Yes we agree, but the “adaptation” that you apparently are in favor of, is also prescribed in the Constitution. It’s called the amendment process:

        “The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.”

        Presidents, judges and congressmen (and women) have disregarded their oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution over an over again. They have done this for various reasons including political and financial gain, strict ideology, etc.

        I understand these “facts” as you say, but just because you may agree with constitutional violations, they still are just that…violations. I would guess if nefarious politicians violated the constitution in ways in which you disagreed perhaps you would change your tune.

        Understand, the Constitution was created to give general and limited powers to a “general” government so that a union of the states could operate and cooperate….not to prescribe for 350M+ people how to live their lives everyday.

        • Fly on the wall says:

          Wrong again. The Constitution adapts to a new world by having clauses, such as what’s been highlighted above, that afford the flexibility to adapt to new scenarios.

          We can go round and round the mulberry bush, rhetorically speaking, until those cows come back to the barn. You and I hold vastly different views of the document, and how it’s been applied over the years. You clearly are a strict constructionist, which – imho – is a flawed interpretation of it.

          Personally, even though the Constitution doesn’t spell out the FDA, I take comfort in knowing that there is someone out there making sure the meds and vitamins I and my family take every day are safe; that the food and beverages we consume are safe; etc. Same with the DEA – again, much ink (and many pixels) have been and will continue to be used to debate the “war on drugs” and other elements, but I appreciate the efforts to keep harmful narcotics off the streets and away from my family and the community I live in.

          [redacted]

          • FLY…there are no such adaptable clauses, can you not read simple English?

            Point me to the language in the Constitution which states “these clauses are adaptable and may change from time to time based upon the current times…”

            I’m not interpreting the document, that is not needed. It reads very plain, you just don’t like what it says.

          • Fly on the wall says:

            Exhibit A:
            Powers of Congress: “To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.” – from Article I, Sec. 8. (See also the amendment process as another means of “adapting” the document to new and different circumstances than what existed 235 years ago.)

            Did the FDA and the DEA exist 235 years ago? Nope. However, this clause most definitely does afford the federal government the authority to pass laws to address, and thus “adapt” the US Code, to new situations. No interpretation there…just a basic reading and comprehension of the words Mr. Madison used.

  13. DAWN PRICE says:

    YOU KNOW TO BE A SMALL TOWN THIS SHOULD NOT BE . ALL THIS BECAUSE THERE IS SOMETHING OUT THERE TO HELP SOMEONE AND IT TURNS INTO I SAID HE SAID .. NO WONDER THIS TOWN CAN NOT GET ALONG I WANT I NEED LETS JUST DO ONE GOOD THING FOR MAN KIND AND THAT MAY BE GET ALONG WITH ONE ANOTHER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THIS COULD BE GOOD FOR SOME AND MAY NOT FOR OTHERS . KEEP THIS LITTLE TOWN GROWING SOME WAY SOME HOW YES WE NEED WHAT WE HAVE LOST AND IT WILL FIND ITS WAY HERE

  14. Sam Card says:

    This program is voluntary and a helpful courtesy from our sheriff who serves our county well.

  15. Right Winger says:

    So what is ultimately done with the pills/medicines after they’re taken back?

  16. Sharon Strickland says:

    Thank you, Sheriff Roper. I recently called about to find a location for taking medications to for safe disposal. With grandchildren in the house daily, I am very cautious with medications. This is a great service to the community.

  17. Sam Card says:

    Necessity is the mother of invention and problems inspire and invite creative solutions. The voluntary pill collection on April 28,2012 is an innovative idea. For example, I know an elderly gentleman who got prescribed a powerful antibiotic for an infection. Unfortunately, the side effects made him feel worse, so the doctor told him to stop taking the medicine. Now the expensive pills are no good and it is safe for him to dispose of them properly. Penicillin is very effective for destroying bacteria, but some people are allergic to it. Many people find out the hard way about unpleasant side effects of some prescribed medicines.

  18. Sharon Strickland says:

    We took all the old medications we had in our house to the collection today at John Enders. We arrived shortly before 2PM (end of the collection time) and the volunteers had four huge bags filled with pill bottles and other types of medications. These were BIG bags. So, the people of Berryville and the surrounding area took advantage of having a safe place to take all these meds to be disposed of properly. It was a good thing. And, I was told that this will be done again in October. With such a successful collection, the volunteers think this will become a twice yearly collection. Thank you DEA and all the volunteers that stayed there for hours today greeting residents and taking the medications.