Riverside County residents who want to get rid of expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs will have an opportunity to discard them Saturday during National Drug Take-Back Day.

The effort, organized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in partnership with local law enforcement agencies, is intended to emphasize the importance of taking commonly abused drugs out of circulation.

“This event is a safe and convenient way for people to dispose of potentially harmful drugs, and in turn help to reduce the addiction rates and overdose deaths that are ripping through communities nationwide,” DEA Special Agent Bill Bodner said. “While this year’s event is a little different due to COVID-19, it’s still important for people to do their part and be a part of the solution by preventing prescription drug abuse.”

The DEA began holding drug take-backs 10 years ago to provide the public with a more secure means of disposal.

During the take-back event last October, law enforcement agencies nationwide collected 882,919 pounds, or 442 tons, of discarded drugs, according to the DEA.

The agency noted that provisions in the federal Secure & Responsible Drug Disposal Act authorize pharmacies, hospitals and other facilities to serve as collection sites year-round.

Typically, most law enforcement agencies throughout Riverside County participate in the campaign, but because of the public health lockdowns, only a few are making space for the event this time.

Residents are invited to dispose of unwanted capsules, drug patches, vape pens, intravenous solutions and related products at the following sites between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.:

— Corona Police Department, parking lot, 730 Public Safety Way;

— Indio Police Department lobby, 46-800 Jackson St.;

— Murrieta Police Department, parking lot, 2 Town Square; and

— Palm Springs Police Department lobby, 200 S. Civic Drive.

No questions will be asked of people disposing of medications. More information is available at www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback/index.html.

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