Teams with County Sheriff, Ogdensburg PD to Host Free Prescription Drug Disposal Event July 22nd
State Senator Patty Ritchie is inviting residents of St. Lawrence County to clean out their medicine cabinets and drawers and bring their unused, unwanted and expired prescription medicines to a special event for free, safe disposal.
Senator Ritchie is teaming with St. Lawrence County Sheriff Kevin Wells and the Ogdensburg Police Department to sponsor the free event next Tuesday, July 22, from 4 to 6 pm, at the Ogdensburg Fire Station, 718 Ford Street.
“Nearly everyone has leftover, unwanted or expired prescription drugs lying somewhere around the house,” Senator Ritchie said. “But these pills can pose a danger to children and pets, they can find their way into the hands of pill abusers, and improper disposal threatens our water, lakes and streams. Events like this allow people to get rid of unneeded medicine in a safe and responsible way.”
“Pill abuse has been directly linked to the growing problem of heroin usage across the US, and there have been a number of stories nationally involving abusers who break into homes, especially those belonging to seniors, in search of unused drugs,” said Sheriff Wells. “Properly disposing of drugs you no longer need or want helps keep these pills from getting into the wrong hands."
Thousands of individual pills totaling more than 150 pounds were disposed of at State Senator Ritchie’s “Shed the Meds” event, held Tuesday in Ogdensburg.
Hosted in conjunction with the Ogdensburg Police Department and the St. Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department, the event provided residents with a safe, responsible way to dispose of unwanted, unused and expired prescription medicines, which can pose a danger to children and pets. In addition, improper disposal can also pollute lakes and streams. Among the pills disposed of were painkillers, opioids and narcotics—substances which are often times the gateway drugs for addiction to illegal substances such as heroin.
“The thousands of prescription pills disposed of at my “Shed the Meds” event will go a long way towards our goals of preventing drug abuse, keeping our drinking water clean and stopping pills from getting in the hands of children or being consumed by pets,” said Senator Ritchie.
Funds Will Assist St. Lawrence County Drug Task Force
State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced she has obtained $50,000 to help the St. Lawrence County Drug Task Force expand its efforts in the fight against the heroin epidemic sweeping the North Country.
“Earlier this year, I held a forum on the heroin and opioid crisis facing small towns across Northern New York and local law enforcement leaders told me they needed more resources to crack down on major dealers,” Senator Ritchie said. “This additional funding will help our law enforcement community focus on the criminal element responsible for bringing so much misery to so many families.”
“The St. Lawrence County Drug Task Force is very grateful to Senator Ritchie for obtaining funds that will allow us to expand our investigations into the sources of the heroin and other narcotics being sold in our communities,” said St. Lawrence County Sheriff Kevin Wells. “When we told Senator Ritchie we needed more resources, she promised to go to Albany to get us the help we needed to take back our neighborhoods.”