The Brookhaven Police Department has received a grant for a drug collection unit as part of CVS’s Health’s Medication Disposal for Safer Communities Program, according to a city press release.

The medication disposal box in the lobby of the Brookhaven Police Department. (Brookhaven Police Department)

The new unit will be located in the lobby of the police department’s headquarters at 2665 Buford Highway and will provide residents with a safe and environmentally responsible way to dispose of unwanted, unused or expired medication, including controlled substances.

“Safely disposing of unused medication is critical to preventing prescription drug abuse and keeping pharmaceuticals out of our waterways,” said Brookhaven Police Chief Gary Yandura in the press release. “The Brookhaven Police Department is proud to partner with CVS Health and we thank them for their commitment to helping residents reduce the amount of unneeded medicine in our community.”

The new drug disposal unit will help to reduce the amount of unneeded medicine in residents’ homes and decrease the potential for prescription drug abuse, which has soared in recent years, especially among teenagers. More than 70 percent of teenagers say it is easy to get prescription drugs from their parents’ medicine cabinets, according to a Partnership for Drug-Free Kids study. Proper drug disposal also helps to prevent the contamination of local landfills and water supplies from unused medication.

“CVS Health is dedicated to helping the communities we serve address and prevent prescription drug abuse,” said Tom Davis, Vice President of Pharmacy Professional Services at CVS Health. “Reducing the amount of unused and unwanted medication in the home is critical to preventing prescription drug abuse. We are proud to work with the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids and local leaders to increase convenient access to safe medication disposal.”

The Medication Disposal for Safer Communities program has donated more than 600 drug collection units to police departments across the country, which have collected more than 47 metric tons, or 100,000 pounds, of unwanted medication. CVS Health also assists law enforcement by supporting local drug take back events and promoting local drug disposal collection sites. CVS Pharmacy locations have taken part in more than 800 events sponsored by local law enforcement as part of National Drug Take-Back Day.

Brookhaven’s new Drug Collection Unit site is open to the public 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and drugs can be dropped off with no questions asked. Brookhaven residents and CVS Pharmacy customers can also inquire about the Medication Disposal for Safer Communities Program at the toll free phone number 1-866-559-8830 or visit http://www.cvs.com/content/prescription-drug-abuse.