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It’s spring and the traditional time to clean out our houses and get rid of/recycle what we no longer need. On Saturday, April 27, UpValley residents will also have the perfect opportunity to clean out their medicine cabinets and safely dispose of old or unwanted medications (prescription and non-prescription) and used “sharps” (syringes).

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in front of the Farmers’ Market, Soroptimist International of Calistoga will host their semi-annual No Drugs Down the Drain curbside collection of these items. Adventist Health (St. Helena Hospital), who partners with SI Calistoga, will provide proper disposal in their special incinerator while our Calistoga Police Department will take custody of the drugs and supervise delivery. Please remember this collection is exclusively for residential, not business, use. Pet medications are also welcome.

We have been blessed with an abundance of rain this year, replenishing our streams and sending water to our bay and ocean. But more than ever, it’s crucial we acknowledge the negative effects of these drugs should they make their way into our streams and waterways. They drastically affect marine life and thus the very viability of this massive ecosystem. Knowing the impact, we need to act now and in the future in the most responsible way. These drugs should never end up in the landfill, where they can seep into groundwater nor be flushed down any drain to pollute our rivers, bays and oceans. Our landfill, in fact, was just recently shut down due to tear in the lining and needed emergency repairs.

To protect one’s privacy just cover up personal information on pill bottles with a felt tip marker before dropping them off. To safely transport “sharps,” use any puncture-resistant container, such as a coffee can with lid or a bleach bottle -- containers with needles and syringes must be labeled “Sharps.”

 This service makes it easy - -and fast -- for all of us to be responsible stewards of our beautiful valley. For more information, call SI Calistoga member Gayle Keller at (707) 942-0890.  Don’t wait — join the “tidying up” movement and join us on the 27th. 

Gayle Keller

Soroptimist International of Calistoga

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