Many high school students take their first drink while at a party with friends. Some do it because of peer pressure, while others are simply curious. Some students are alcoholics by the time graduation rolls around.
Underage drinking can cause serious problems for teens, including problems with the law. It is important to identify those areas in the state where more enforcement of the legal drinking age is needed.
According to a report by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (LCB), some counties are seeing more underage drinking than the overall state average. The Pennsylvania Youth Survey, which is conducted with students who are in grades 6, 8, 10 and 12. This survey found that 31.8 percent of students who participated in the survey "were willing to try alcohol." Those who have already participated in binge drinking accounted for 10.5 percent. The state average for these two survey questions were 27.3 and 7.8 percent, respectively.
Another alarming result of the survey was that over half of students in the 10th grade have already drunk alcohol. Many of these students get their alcohol at home and sometimes, with their parents' permission.
As a result, some Pennsylvania counties are targeting parents about the consequences of letting minors drink. Some of the ways this is happening include:
-- Stickers on beer to remind parents and other adults not to buy alcohol for minors.
-- Public service announcements, billboards and local government proclamations with the message of "Parents who Host Lose the Most."
A teenager who is found to be in possession of alcohol or under the influence of alcohol can face stiff penalties. If your child is in trouble with the law because of underage drinking, an attorney can provide guidance for both you and your child.
Source: Herald-Standard, "Report shows underage drinking a problem in area," Steve Ferris, June 19, 2017