The Cherokee Multi-Agency Narcotics Squad (CMANS) is responsible for the consolidated efforts of Cherokee County law enforcement agencies and offices to address the drug problem. One of the primary initiatives designed to address the public concerns about prescription drug abuse is the CMANS Project Drug Drop. While the Drug Enforcement Administration offers a Drug Take-Back day on a national basis, CMANS offers this service on a routine basis.
This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Prescription drugs that languish in home medicine cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high; more Americans (6.8 million) currently abuse prescription drugs than the number of those using cocaine, heroin, hallucinogens like LSD, and inhalants (sniffed household products) combined, according to the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.
The CMANS Project Drug Drop is needed because the US and the Georgia Controlled Substances Act as originally written didn’t provide a way for patients, caregivers, and pet owners to dispose of such controlled substance medications such as painkillers, sedatives, tranquilizers, and stimulants like ADHD drugs. People were flushing their old meds down the toilet or throwing them in the trash, but in recent years medicines have been found in the nation’s water supplies, and medications were being retrieved from the trash by those who would abuse or sell them.
To give people a more environmentally responsible and secure way to dispose of their meds, CMANS established its Project Drug Drop in January 2012. Georgia law allows law enforcement officers to properly dispose of drugs as long as certain specific procedures are adhered to. CMANS Agents are specially trained to perform this service, and to fully comply with all provisions of Georgia and Federal law.
CMANS purchased and located prescription drug take-back boxes in the lobby of the Canton Police Department headquarters, the Holly Springs Police Department headquarters, the Woodstock Police Department headquarters, the Ball Ground Police Department headquarters and the Administrative Building of the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office. Citizens (no matter where they live) may drop off prescription drugs at these secure drop boxes. CMANS recommends that persons who drop off drugs mark out there name and address prior to depositing prescription bottles in the box. No liquids or Syringes.