Dear Editor:

New Year’s resolutions are talked about by many and followed through by few. Perhaps you have made some yourself this year. Perhaps you are still keeping them, or more likely, you have already lost the battle of good intentions.

I, like so many, have been inundated in the past months by news stories about prescription drug abuse and about how the nation is in a crisis.

Local programs for recovery from the courts to the churches are in place, but still we are at best treading water – almost drowning from this community problem, which affects so many families, directly or indirectly.

Well, I had a conversation with myself and wondered what I could do differently in 2018, to personally…in some small way…help.

I came to the conclusion that I should properly dispose of the obsolete medications on my shelf. Not flushing them down the toilet has been long suggested since the National Geographic Potomac River investigation in which the fish had both male and female sex organs as a result of man-made chemicals in the river.

Subsequently, I called my local pharmacy to see if they would accept them back like Home Depot does with batteries, Walmart does with engine oil and many grocery stores do with plastic bags, but guess what?

That’s right; there is no easy way that I could find to get rid of obsolete prescription drugs in Scottsboro. Now, I have heard rumors that the BBB, twice a year, offers a collection of electronics (things that contain cadmium, zinc, lead, etc. that should not go into the landfill) and drugs…but…let’s get real.

For the last two years I have been out of town on the “only” day for collection, and who in their right mind is going to store up, stockpile and wait six months and then wait in a long line to be a “good citizen.”

Why can’t Scottsboro facilitate getting drugs off the street and while at it, let’s collect for proper disposal electronics, chemicals, etc. that shouldn’t be going into the landfill?

People work different shifts and different days, but if Scottsboro had a “simple and easy” drop off point for prescription drugs, wouldn’t that help curb the epidemic we are having?

And while the leadership of Scottsboro is at it, couldn’t they facilitate the collection of old computers, TVs, florescent tubes, cell phones, paint thinners, chemicals, etc., that shouldn’t go into the landfill, but are going there right now?

Maybe I am wrong, and there is a program out there, but if there is, why is it such a well-kept secret?

—Alan Richardson


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