With summer in and school out, unsupervised youth may be in danger of accessing and/or consuming alcohol in their homes and in the homes of their friends. These dangers are real and possibly deadly.
Through the 2012 Ulster County Youth Development Survey, we
asked youth in grades 7-12 how they obtained alcohol and where they drank it.
While 56.8% reported not drinking at all in the past year, 25.4% reported
drinking in their own home, and 26.1% reported
drinking in the home of a friend.
In almost every case involving underage drinking, somewhere
along the way an adult broke the law. 35% of Ulster
County youth reported obtaining
alcohol with the aid of an adult. The Ulster County Social Host law holds parents accountable for drinking
parties involving under-age participants in their home. However, many adults still believe that
allowing youth to drink in the home is "safer" and that they can
teach youth to drink "responsibly". 10.3% of Ulster
County youth reported drinking with
Although many still view underage drinking as a rite of
passage, it is a dangerous practice that should be discouraged. Every three
minutes someone under the legal drinking age in the US
has to go to the emergency room because they drank underage.
Youth ages 15 and younger who drink alcohol are 4 times more
likely to become dependent on alcohol and 5 times more likely to abuse alcohol later
in life than those who wait until they are 21 or older. Alcohol use can
interfere with adolescent brain development. Adolescent brains do not
discriminate between alcohol used without permission and alcohol used with
In addition, adolescents may make the poor choice of getting
behind the wheel of a car after drinking. It is no coincidence that during
June, July and August the greatest number of teenagers perish in car crashes,
according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
This summer and all year, adults should monitor and secure
alcohol at home in order to help prevent underage drinking. Parents are urged
to have a frank discussion with teens about the dangers of underage drinking
and set rules, including not getting into a car with someone who has been
If you have had the talk with your teen about drugs, but not
alcohol, now’s the time to have it.
Director of Ulster Prevention Council
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Tuesday, June 4, 2013
At our annual Ulster Prevention Council Conference last week we recognized outstanding Ulster County youth who participated in our 2013 Media Contest and received Innovations in Substance Abuse Prevention Awards.
These awards honor the memory of Phil Terpening, former chairman of the Ulster Prevention Council Board. Prizes were awarded for poster, radio and video projects that communicated messages regarding the risks associated with the misuse of prescription medications; alternatives to drug use; awareness of the harmful effects of marijuana on youth brain development; and our Be Aware, Don’t Share and Lock Your Meds campaigns.Over 40 poster submissions were received. Ellenville High School students Willie Bruce and Logan Rotolo tied for first place in the poster contest, and Hunter Odell received an honorable mention.
Tessa Albert from Ellenville High School submitted the winning radio PSA, and Paris Smith from Saugerties High School submitted the winning video PSA. Nick Natale from Saugerties High School received an honorable mention for his video PSA.
Under the guidance of teachers Scott Wickham at Saugerties High School and Tim Lukaszewski and Alan Buckler and Ellenville High Schools, the students were able to produce original, creative and powerful media messages that UPC will use to provide education and awareness throughout Ulster County and beyond.
All of our PSA's are available for distribution to schools, waiting rooms, public access stations and other community venues to get the word out regarding these priority topics. Please contact UPC at 458-7406 for information.To view some of our winners, please visit our Facebook page and remember to like Ulster Prevention Council us while you are there!
Director of Ulster Prevention Council