In an effort to provide people a place to safely dispose of their old medications, several local organizations are partnering together to sponsor a drug take-back day in Chattanooga.
Locations will be set up across Hamilton, Bradley, Marion and Polk counties Oct. 22 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Some of these locations will also have document shredders to get rid of medical bills or other sensitive documents.
Those involved with the drug take-back day emphasize the multitude of precautionary benefits that come from returning old medications. Those who participate can reduce the risk of drug abuse by family members, a child or family member falling ill from taking bad medications, and drug-related break-ins, officials said.
Tennessee American Water, a partner of the local drug take-back day, also encourages citizens to participate in the event as an alternative to flushing medications.
Medication when flushed down the toilet breaks down and enters local waterways, which can cause adverse environmental effects or end up in the body through water consumption.
"We want to encourage people to get in this habit not only for environmental reasons but so that [medication is] not lying around for youths or old people to form addictive habits," Daphne Kirksey, external affairs manager for Tennessee American Water, said.
Alina Hunter-Grah is a contributing writer. She is also currently attending UTC, where she is the news editor for the school newspaper, The University Echo.