UCDFC Partners with Local Businesses
to Reduce Youth Alcohol Use
The Union County Drug Free Coalition is partnering with local businesses that sell alcohol to remind their customers, "We Don't Serve Teens". We know that underage drinking is not only illegal, it can also lead to serious health and safety issues for our teens.
Rick Carder, owner of the Marysville Short Stop, was happy to put that message on the front door of his store. "I'm happy to help. We don't want kids drinking," said Carder. Local businesses have an opportunity to restrict access to alcohol and check identification to reduce underage drinking.
Although alcohol is typically downplayed as a serious drug, alcohol is the number one drug of choice among youth. In Union County, 36.1% of 11th grade students indicated they had consumed alcohol in the past 30 days. Over half of those surveyed who reported drinking in the past 30 days also reported having used alcohol on three or more occasions during that same period. These results were taken from the 2012 Union County Youth Risk Behavior Survey.
The Union County Drug Free Coalition is grateful to our local business partners who are doing their part to help youth choose healthy behaviors and stay drug free.
It's Time to Talk ...
About Alcohol and Drugs
Social media sites to connect with peers have become very popular among adults and youth alike. Teens post text and pictures to express themselves and share about their lives. But more important than your teen having “likes” or “followers” there is a critical need to connect with you, the parent. Reading your child’s “tweets” or watching their video posts may keep you in the loop, but it doesn’t take the place of face-to-face time. Your connection with your child will serve as a backdrop to their relationships and decisions in the present and in the future, including the decision not to use alcohol and other drugs.
Did you know that, on average, 42% of 7th, 9th and 11th grade students in Union County reported that their parents talked to them "never" or “seldom” talked to them about alcohol and drugs? (2012 Union County YRBS)
The average age for a teen to try alcohol, tobacco or other drugs for the first time is 13. But you can help your teen stay healthy and drug-free. Kids who learn about the risks of drugs from their parents are up to 50 percent less likely to use. (2007 Partnership Attitude Tracking Study) So, most importantly, stay involved. Young teens may say they don't need your guidance, but they're much more open to it than they'll ever let on. Here’s how you can stay connected:
Spend Time hanging out together. It will give insight into what is going on with friends and school.
Include Friends of your child in fun activities. Get to know their parents too.
Listen to what your child says first. They want to feel like what they say matters to you without hearing your advice first.
Talk early and often with them about your family rules to not use alcohol and drugs.
Be Clear about your expectations and the possible consequences.
Adolescence is a time of many changes and big decision-making. Be sure to talk regularly, remain engaged in your child’s everyday life and continuously strive to strengthen the connection. A strong and positive relationship now will serve you and your child both today and down the road.
Check out the video below, and browse ucdrugfree.org to find more ways to keep your children safe and drug free.
You can find additional information at www.theparenttoolkit.org.