DEA Tip of the Week: National Take Back Day offers opportunity to properly dispose of medications


EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — National Take Back is Saturday, a day that the Drug Enforcement Administration encourages the public to drop off their unused and expired medications for proper disposal.

Carlos Briano, public information officer for the DEA El Paso Division, joined KTSM 9 News to explain more about the bi-annual event.

National Drug Take Back Day event will be occurring nationwide from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Saturday. Briano said there will be nine locations throughout the city where El Pasoans and Southern New Mexicans can take their medications for safe disposal. You can find the location nearest you at

In Southern New Mexico, residents can drop off medications at the following:

  • Walmart Supercenter, 3331 Rinconada Blvd., Las Cruces
  • Walmart Supercenter, 1550 S. Valley Dr., Las Cruces
  • Walmart Neighborhood Market, 150 Sonoma Ranch Blvd., Las Cruces
  • Walmart Supercenter, 571 Walton Blvd., Las Cruces
  • Branigan Library, 200 E. Picacho Ave., Las Cruces
  • Dona Ana County Fire Station, 601 Dona Ana School Rd., Mesilla
  • Toucan Market, 1701 E. University Ave., Las Cruces
  • Mesilla Marshals Office, 2231 Avenida De Mesilla, Mesilla
  • Mesquite Fire Department, 1 Firehouse Road, Mesquite
  • Stires Supermarket, 304 McCombs Rd., Chaparral
  • Anthony Municipal Building, 820 NM 478
  • Hatch Police Department, 133 Franklin St., Hatch

The service is free and anonymous, and only pills or patches are accepted. The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles.

Briano said that it’s important for the public to properly dispose of medications because doing otherwise causes a public safety and public health issue.

“Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse,” he explained. “Rates of prescription drug abuse in the United States are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.”

To ensure the public is safe, Briano said collection sites will be drive-thru style and the public will not have to exit their vehicles. Additionally, local COVID-19 guidelines and regulations will be in place.

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