On Saturday, October 23, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., San Joaquin County Public Health Services and the San Joaquin County Opioid Safety Coalition will work with local law enforcement and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to provide drop-off locations for old or unwanted drugs. Proper disposal of medications not only hinders theft and misuse but also spares the environment from toxic disposal in the garbage or down sinks and the toilet. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked. To keep everyone safe, collection sites will follow local COVID-19 guidelines and regulations. Residents can stop by nine drive-through drop-off sites throughout the county: Code 3 Wear, 304 Lincoln Center, Stockton Gianone Park Center, 2885 East Harding Way, Stockton Kennedy Park Center, 2800 South D Street, Stockton Morada Market, 4416 East Hildreth Lane, Stockton Stockton Police Department Operations Building, 22 East Market Street, Stockton Stockton Unified School District Department of Public Safety, 640 North San Joaquin Street Young’s Payless Market, 18980 CA-88, Lockeford Lathrop Senior Center, 15707 5th Street, Lathrop Financial Services Parking Lot, 310 West Elm Street, Lodi Please note: Sites cannot accept needles or sharps. Pills may be brought in loose, in blister packs, or in their original prescription bottles. Liquid products, such as cough syrup, should remain sealed in their original container. Vaping devices and cartridges must have lithium batteries removed. Pet medications are also accepted. With studies indicating a majority of abused prescription drugs come from family and friends, particularly home medicine cabinets, clearing out unused medicine is essential. Prescription medications often end up in the wrong hands, fueling an epidemic that kills more Americans than car accidents, according to the DEA. “This is an opportune time to help protect our loved ones and community members from drug overdoses and opioid misuse,” says Dr. Maggie Park, San Joaquin County Public Health Officer. “I am inviting everyone to clean out your medicine cabinets and dispose of all your unused or expired medications at one of our Take Back sites. Together, we can reduce medication poisonings and overdoses in our county.” This Drug Take Back Day is the 21st nationwide event since its inception more than10 years ago. This spring, 933 pounds of unused or expired medications were collected at San Joaquin County collection sites during the April 2021 Drug Take Back Day. In addition to DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, there are more than 11,000 authorized collectors available year-round. For more information, visit San Joaquin County’s Medication and Sharps Disposal Program’s website or DEA’s year-round collection site locator. For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the October 23 Take Back Day event, go to www.DEATakeBack.com . For questions about the local collaboration, contact Daniel Kim, Supervising Public Health Educator, at 209-468-3842 or firstname.lastname@example.org .