Event offers free medicine disposal, paper shredding

Staff report

March 11, 2014

LAURINBURG — Community Shred and Operation Medicine Drop will join forces next month to give citizens a no-cost, one-stop opportunity to protect themselves from identity theft and prevent accidental poisonings.

The two events are scheduled for March 22 and will be held at the new Walgreens store parking lot located at 821 Westwood Way in Laurinburg, adjacent to US 15-401 Bypass. Operation Medicine Drop will be held from 10 am until 2 pm. The Community Shred event is scheduled for 10:30 am until 1:30 pm.

The Community Shred, sponsored by Scotland County Cooperative Extension and Extension and Community Association provides citizens a safe way to dispose of confidential information in an effort to prevent identity theft. This service is offered free of charge for individuals only with a limit of 4 boxes or 100 pounds per person. Residents of Scotland and the surrounding counties are encouraged to participate.

Pro-Shred, a company that specializes in secure document management will provide the shred service. Volunteers will be on hand to assist participants with transporting their boxes to the shred truck. Staples, paper clips and plastic sleeves will not need to be removed, as the equipment can shred these items along with the paper.

The fifth annual Operation Medicine Drop, sponsored by the Laurinburg Police Department, Scotland County Sheriff’s Department, Scotland County Committee — Safe Kids Mid-Carolinas Region and North Carolina Safe Kids provides citizens an opportunity to safely rid their homes of unwanted over the counter and prescription drugs.

Many significant problems are associated with unused and expired drugs in the home. Drugs often are left unsecured in cabinets and on counters. Improper use of drugs may cause an overdose and drug interactions. Accidental poisoning from ingestion of drugs among children and pets often occurs in homes where medicine is easily accessible. For example, about 40 percent of poisoning among children occurs in grandparents’ homes.

Furthermore, the disposal of unwanted drugs as household trash or by flushing them down the sink or toilet is unwise and dangerous to the environment, potentially contaminating the water supply.

“We want to encourage citizens to take advantage of this opportunity to safely dispose of unused and expired medication,” said Corporal J. Byrd of the Laurinburg Police Department. “The ultimate goal of this program is to reduce accidental poisonings, prevent drug abuse and protect our waters. Residents will not be questioned about the medication or how they obtained it.”

For information on the Community Shred event, please contact Scotland County Cooperative Extension at 277-2422. For information on Operation Medicine Drop, please contact Corporal J. Byrd, Laurinburg Police Department at 276-3211.