Below is a press release from the Middlesex District Attorney:
WOBURN, MA — Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan, Concord Chief of Police Joseph F. O’Connor and Carlisle Chief of Police John Fisher are reminding parents and caregivers about the dangers of providing alcohol to minors in their homes as families continue to celebrate the end of the school year milestones. This advisory comes as part of ongoing prevention initiatives that help young people and parents think critically about their decision-making and encourages them to make healthy choices. Parents and peers can play a significant role in unsafe substance use and shape young people’s attitudes towards drinking.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, teenagers drink alcohol for the first time during June and July. As the temperature rises, families are more likely to take vacations and host celebrations, barbecues and pool days.
“Having conversations about the risks and effects of alcohol and other substances and setting and enforcing clear rules saves lives and helps ensure that our children and their friends are celebrating safely and responsibly,” said District Attorney Marian Ryan. “It’s important to acknowledge that underage drinking is frequently made possible by adults and preventing it must be a priority.”
“We know that people have been unable to gather together for some time and are eager to celebrate.” Chief O’Connor added, “We hope this serves as a timely reminder that will help keep people safe.”
“Young adults and their families are feeling unsure of what normal milestones’ celebrations look like. We are aware that the isolation and restructuring are presenting new challenges for all, but everyone must have safety as the number one priority to have positive and rewarding experiences,” said Chief Fisher.
Some tips and steps to prevent and reduce underage drinking are:
- Have an ongoing discussion about the risks of alcohol intake.
- Discourage violation of alcohol rules by consistently enforcing them.
- Be involved. Know who, what, where and when.
- Provide your children with the developmentally appropriate knowledge, skills, and motivation to resist peer and other pressures to drink.
- Create a plan with your children about what to do in a risky situation. Texting, calling or going to a safe location are helpful ideas.
- Don’t assume that other parents have the same rules you have.
To learn more about resources available to prevent underage drinking, visit the Bureau of Substance Abuse Services from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health
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