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Two supermarkets latest locations for bins to help remove drugs from circulation

'This initiative provides a real opportunity to reduce the availability of drugs and medicines that have the potential to be misused'

Constable McKenna, Sherene Reynolds, Elaine Livingstone, Aisling Gillespie and Andrew Alderdice

Another two bins to help people dispose of drugs – no questions asked – have been installed in the borough.

RAPID (Remove All Prescription and Illegal Drugs) is an initiative that promotes and facilitates the removal of all types of prescription and illegal drugs from the local community and provides disposal bins in various places across the council area.

The programme is continuing be rolled out across the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon borough with the latest two bins now in place at Portadown and Rathfriland.

Milestone Supermarket in Rathfriland and the Asda Superstore in Portadown are the new locations.

Bringing the total to eight, the RAPID Bins – which are bright yellow – are also located at Portadown Health Centre,

Future Proof Banbridge, Tesco Craigavon, Tesco Lurgan, Sainsbury’s Armagh and the Tommy Makem Arts and Community Centre in Keady

Lord Mayor Glenn Barr said: “It is fantastic to see the installation of these two new RAPID bins in Rathfriland and Portadown. The increase in availability of these bins will continue to help combat the illegal use of drugs and prescription medication within our local communities.

“Council’s PCSP team continues to work in partnership with the PSNI, Public Health Agency and the local Drug and Alcohol Coordination Team to deliver the campaign’s three aims to remove prescription, illegal and new psychoactive substances; Provide information and support to individuals, families, local businesses and community organisations to raise awareness of the effects and risks of using/misusing illegal and/or prescription drugs; and lastly to bring together community and statutory agencies, local businesses and the public under the RAPID initiative to work towards making their local community a safer place to live.”

Christopher Hynes, Aisling Gillespie, Sherene Reynolds, Constable Boyce & Cllr Jill Macauley

Some of the most common drugs disposed of in the RAPID bins are Diazepam, Citalopram, Gabapentin, Quetiapine, Mirtazapine, Pregabalin, Tramadol, Naproxen, Co-Codamol, Amitriptyline, Paroxetine, Kapake, Fluoxetine and Codeine.

ABC PCSP Chair Councillor Jill Macauley commented: “The RAPID initiative provides a safe way for anyone to dispose of drugs, whether they are prescribed or illegal, and to do so discreetly and anonymously. Most of the drugs disposed so far have been prescription medications.

“We are concerned that prescription drugs can be sold on and used recreationally, often mixed with other drugs or alcohol, which is very dangerous.

“Drug misuse, involving both illegal and prescription drugs, is sadly a common issue and has the potential to cause suffering and tragedy to individuals, families and communities.

“This initiative provides a real opportunity to reduce the availability of drugs and medicines that have the potential to be misused. So, should you have, or come across unwanted or unused drugs, tablets or medicines, we would encourage you to deposit them in a RAPID Bin safely – to keep your family and your community safe.”

For more information on RAPID please visit www.drugsandalcoholni.info/rapid or contact Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Policing and Community Safety Partnership on 0300 0300 900.

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