DEA announcement comes as a result of request from Markey, bipartisan group of Senators

Washington (July 28, 2015) – Today, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) praised the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) for reinstating its very popular and effective National Prescription Drug Take-Back Days after last year canceling the events. In May, Senator Markey led a letter with a bipartisan group of nine Senators calling on the agency to reverse it decision and provide the opportunity for Americans to dispose of unneeded, unwanted and unused prescription drugs at events across the country. At the last DEA-sponsored National Prescription Drug Take-Back event, the DEA and more than 4,000 of its partners collected 309 tons of unwanted drugs at nearly 5,500 sites around the country, bringing the total amount of drugs collected in four years to more than 2,400 tons. From 1999-2012, overdose deaths related to prescription painkillers more than tripled. Although less than five percent of the world’s population, the United States consumes 80 percent of the global opioid painkillers.

 The DEA has just announced the next Prescription Drug Take Back Day will be September 26.

“Reinstating Prescription Drug Take-Back Days is a major step in the right direction in turning the tide on the national epidemic of prescription drug abuse,” said Senator Markey.  “These events give families the opportunity to responsibly dispose of prescription drugs that are expired or no longer needed. Ridding our medicine cabinets of old and unused prescription drugs will help us rid our communities of prescription drugs that could be misused or abused. I commend Acting Administrator Rosenberg for his leadership, and look forward to working with the DEA to combat this prescription drug and heroin epidemic that is devastating Massachusetts and every community across the country.” 

The DEA’s response to the letter sent by Senator Markey and the Senators can be found HERE

The May letter calling for the reinstatement of this program led by Senator Markey was also signed by Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.V.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Joe Manchin (D-W.V.).