11 TV Hill: State of Addiction – Fight to end opioid epidemic starts with your medicine cabinet

♪ JASON: THE FIGHT TO END THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC HAS TO START SOMEWHERE, AND THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT AGENCY SUGGESTS ITS ‘S WITHIN YOUR MEDICINE CABINET. 11 NEWS REPORTER KIM DACEY TELLS US ABOUT THIS WEEKEND’S NATIONAL DRUG TAKE-BACK DAY. REPORTER: PATAPSCO STATE PARK IS A SPECIAL PLACE FOR JOHN SULLIVAN. IT REMINDS HIM OF HIS SON BRENDAN. >> MY SON USED TO COME DOWN HERE AND FISHING HERE. HE AND I USED TO FISH HERE A LOT OF THE WATERFALL. IT’S JUST A SPECIAL PLACE. REPORTER: JOHN HAS ONLY HIS MEMORIES OF BRENDAN. HE LOST HIM TO OPIOID MISUSE SEVEN YEARS AGO. HE WAS JUST 19. >> HE WAS ON HIS WAY TO GO IN COLLEGE AND LIFE WAS GOING TO BE , GREAT. AND THEN ONE DAY, WE NOTICED HIS PERSONALITY STARTED TO CHANGE A LITTLE BIT. AT THIS POINT, WE HAD NO IDEA THERE WAS A BIG OPIOID PROBLEM IN HIGH SCHOOLS IN OUR COUNTY. AND IT WAS BEING PASSED AROUND LIKE CANDY AND THESE KIDS HAD NO IDEA IT WAS MAN-MADE HEROIN. REPORTER: JOHN SAYS BRENDAN TOOK HIS FIRST PILL IN HIGH SCHOOL WITH FRIENDS WHO GOT THE DRUGS FROM HOME. THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT AGENCY SAYS FOUR OUT OF EVERY FIVE MISUSERS OF HEROIN, START WITH PRESCRIPTION DRUGS. THAT’S ONE REASON THEY HOLD THE NATIONAL DRUG TAKE BACK DAY, YOU CAN BRING ANY MEDICATIONS TO ONE OF THEIR LOCATIONS AND TURN THEM IN NO QUESTIONS ASKED. ,>> GO THROUGH YOUR MEDICINE CABINETS. GO THROUGH YOUR NIGHTSTANDS. GO THROUGH YOUR CLOSETS. IF YOU HAVE ELDERLY PARENTS, GO THROUGH THEIRS, TOO. REPORTER: MANY POLICE STATIONS HAVE A PERMANENT DRUG COLLECTION BOX, SO YOU CAN DROP THEM OFF ANY TIME, AND THEY ALL GO TO THE SAME PLACE, THE DEA. THEY TAKE THEM TO AN INCINERATOR TO SAFELY GET RID OF THEM. >> BECAUSE WE DON’T WANT PEOPLE TO TAKE IT NOT KNOWING WHAT THEY ARE TAKING. WE DON’T WANT KIDS TO TAKE IT AND MAYBE TAKE IT TO A PARTY AND HAVE OTHER KIDS USE IT. WE DON’T WANT IT DUMPED DOWN THE TOILET AND MAYBE IT GOES IN A — THE CHESAPEAKE BAY. JUST BRING IT HERE WE’LL TAKE CARE OF IT WE’LL DESTROY IT. REPORTER: IT’S MIGHT SEEM LIKE A SMALL STEP TOWARD CURBING THE OPIOID MISUSE EPIDEMIC, BUT IT HAS TO START SOMEWHERE. JOHN SULLIVAN KNOWS THAT, AND DOESN’T WANT ANY OTHER PARENTS TO HAVE TO GO THROUGH THE LOSS OF A CHILD. >> MY ADVICE TO PARENTS RIGHT NOW>>, TALKING ABOUT THE PRESCRIPTION TAKEBACK PROGRAM, HOW IMPORTANT IT IS TO GET THESE DRUGS OUT OF YOUR HOUSE. 75% OF THE TEENAGERS ARE GETTING IT FROM FAMILY AND FRIENDS. REPORTER: NATIONAL DRUG TAKEBACK DAY IS APRIL 29 FROM 10:00 TO 2:00. TO FIND A LOCATION NEAR YOU YOU LOG ONTO OUR WEBSITE, WBALTV.COM, OR CLICK ON OUR FREE LOCAL APP. IN BALTIMORE, KIM DACEY, WBAL TV 11 NEWS. JASON: THAT’S ALL FOR THIS SPECIAL EDITION OF 11 TV HILL “STATE OF ADDICTION.” THANK YOU FOR JOINING US TONIGHT.

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