Laguna Niguel–opioid epidemic

The Laguna Niguel City Council has endorsed the city’s staff’s efforts to combat the opioid epidemic. City Manager Kristine Ridge says South Orange County is the hardest hit region of Orange County for opioid abuse. Laguna Niguel is ranked sixth for opioid related emergency department visits in the county and related overdose deaths.

She says in the past year the Laguna Niguel police services had responded to five opioid related overdose deaths.

Ridge says the Council was told over half of the teens abusing opioids were getting it from a family member or a friend from the medicine cabinet, often without the individual’s knowledge. And the best way to dispose of expired and or unwanted medicines is through Drug Take Back Programs.

She says the Laguna Niguel Police Services at City Hall has a drug disposal receptacle that’s available five days a week between eight in the morning and five in the evening. It’s located at the intersection of Alicia Parkway and Crown Valley Parkway.

The city also has two annual drug take back events at the Sea Country and Senior Community Center.

Dawn Kamber