The New Year: Families Can Resolve To Prevent Underage Drinking
Underage alcohol use is not inevitable, and families are not helpless to prevent it. In the coming year, families can resolve to focus on factors that protect youth from alcohol use and work to reduce factors that put youth at higher risk for underage drinking.
Families can make such a resolution with confidence: Teens say that they rely on adults in their lives more than anyone else to help them make tough decisions and to provide good advice.
Here are some general tips for parents and other adults:
- When you talk with your teens about drinking, listen to them and respect what they say.
- Make clear your expectation that your teens will not drink.
- Teach your children about the dangers of underage drinking.
Discuss laws about underage drinking, including the age 21 minimum legal drinking law.
Key Resources for Families
A Family Guide To Keeping Youth Mentally & Drug Free
Start Talking Before They Start Drinking: A Family Guide (PDF - 422 KB)
The Surgeon General’s Call to Action To Prevent and Reduce Underage Drinking: What It Means to You: A Guide for Families.
Available to order in English or download (PDF - 899 KB)
MAKE A DIFFERENCE: Talk to your child about Alcohol (PDF - 774 KB)
New Business Audience Added
Check out the new Business category in the red audience sections above! Businesses can have a strong influence over youth in preventing underage drinking in their communities. Click here to see how.
Holiday Underage Drinking Prevention: News and Tips
Happy holidays! Federal resources are available to help you plan festivities that can help prevent underage alcohol use this holiday season. Click here for more information.
New Data Show Drinking Age Laws Saved 4,441 Lives Over 5 Years
Minimum 21-year-old drinking age laws prevented an estimated 4,441 drunken driving deaths in the last five years alone, according to a new report released Nov. 6. NHTSA Acting Administrator David Kelly, who presented the report at a symposium on the subject led by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) said, “Turning our back on these laws would be a deadly mistake. Minimum drinking age laws are among the most effective measures ever used to reduce drunken driving deaths among America's young people.”Read the Report (PDF 366KB)
An Examination of the Criticisms of the Minimum Legal Drinking Age 21 Laws in the U.S. from a Traffic-Safety Perspective (PDF 244KB)
New E-Cards for Youth!
SAMHSA’s Too Smart To Start prevention education initiative has unveiled two new e-cards designed especially for tweens and teens to personalize and e-mail to their friends or siblings. These cards can be used to encourage youth not to give in to peer pressure or to help teens and tweens support each other in their decision to stay away from alcohol. Coming soon are e-cards for parents and other adults. Spanish versions will also be posted.