A real estate agent isn't going to follow someone into the bathroom during an open house or a scheduled showing.

And that may be the only reason a "potential buyer" shows up in the first place.

For years, drug awareness experts have been warning the general public to secure their prescription medications or get rid of unused prescriptions, so that they don't fall in the wrong hands of individuals looking for their next opioid fix.

With a campaign launched Tuesday, New Jersey Realtors joins in the effort and will educate homeowners with an active listing about the importance of limiting access to their unused or unwanted drugs.

"Safe Home — Safe Sale" includes an educational brochure for agents to share with their clients, as well as an educational program for realtors that will be offered as part of their required continuing education.

"This is an issue that everybody in society has a part in, and this is us trying to do our part," said Christian Schlueter, immediate past president of NJ Realtors.

The campaign is a joint effort along with the HealthCare Institute of New Jersey, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, and Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey.

"The opioid crisis is impacting every community in our state and it is imperative that we all take steps to safeguard our homes," said Angelo Valente, the Partnership's executive director. "Last year, New Jersey lost over 3,000 residents to the opioid epidemic and securing and safely disposing of the prescribed opioids in our homes can protect our families and save lives."

Secure drop boxes are located throughout the Garden State for residents looking to safely dispose of their medications. Experts advise residents not to flush drugs down the toilet.

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Contact reporter Dino Flammia at dino.flammia@townsquaremedia.com.

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