Saturday is the 15th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, and Mankato city staff will be in front of the Public Safety Center on South Front Street to make it easy for anyone to dispose of unneeded medications.
Rick Baird plays a dual role, working for the city’s environmental services department and as a part-time police officer, and he said they’ll take a list of items curbside from people who won’t even have to get out of the car. He said that includes, “Prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, narcotics and other controlled substances, medication samples, pet medications, vitamins and supplements, liquid medication in glass or leak-proof containers, medicated ointments and lotions, and inhalers.”
There are things they cannot accept. Baird explained that those are “Needles, syringes or other sharps, thermometers, IV bags, bloody or infectious waste, hydrogen peroxide, and business waste.”
However, illegal drugs will be taken – no questions asked. Baird said, “If a parent found something, or a tenant finds something they want to get rid of we’ll take care of that and destroy it for them.”
Additionally, the city of Mankato provides a self-serve, anonymous drug drop box disposal service year-round 24-hours a day at Mankato’s Public Safety Center. Safely disposing of medications helps keep them out of landfills and the water system. Items collected are burned because this does not hurt the environment.
Last year’s drug drop day collected about 100 pounds of unwanted medications, most expired prescription or over the counter meds, and Baird says during the calendar year they collected more than 1,500 pounds of drugs through the collection box in the lobby of the public safety center.