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Thursday, Sept. 23, 2010 10:16 am

DRUG DROP

Prescription drugs are like fire: they can be useful tools if used appropriately, but they can cause terrible damage when abused. According to the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, one in five teens have used prescription drugs to get high, and each day 2,500 teenagers use a prescription drug to get high for the first time, which has led to a 400 percent increase in hospital admissions for prescription drug abuse.

To fight the tide, the Springfield Police Department is partnering with Prevention First of Springfield, a nonprofit committed to drug-free communities, for National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Anyone with unused, unwanted or expired prescription drugs can drop the drugs off with Prevention First, where  police will monitor disposal and the local Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) chapter will distribute information on preventing drug abuse. The service is free and anonymous, with no questions asked.

“Reducing easy access to prescription drugs is a vital step towards keeping them out of the hands of teenagers who might misuse and abuse them,” said Karel Ares, executive director of Prevention First.

The drop-off is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 25 at the Prevention First office, 2800 Montvale Drive in Springfield. For more information, contact Manjula Batmanathan-Rigg at communications@prevention.org or 217.793.7353, ext. 113. 

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