In the age of technology, it’s easier than ever before to digest unreliable information. Rumors spread fast, and more times than not, what kids think they know about alcohol isn’t fully true.
Fortunately, our own research shows that parents are the number one influence on their kids’ decision to drink or not to drink alcohol. Parents must feel confident in their own drinking behavior, the knowledge they are passing on to their kids, their understanding of reputable sources, and critical underage drinking related laws. Underage drinking is not only illegal, but also dangerous. When the medulla is impaired by too much alcohol, basic functions like breathing and swallowing can become compromised.
- Model responsible behavior – your kids are paying more attention than you may realize.
- Let your kids know that, no matter what, you will always be there to help, if they need a ride or help out of a dangerous situation. Their life is more important than the consequences they may be afraid of. Make this abundantly clear.
Social Hosting Laws
- Many parents claim they would rather their kids safely drink in their own home as opposed to going out and about, but there are serious consequences for adults who do host these types of parties.
- Social hosting refers to parents who allow underage kids to drink in their homes. If a kid ends up injured or involved in some type of accident, the host can be fined and even faced with jail time. Providing alcohol to minors and allowing them to consume in your home is illegal, and there are consequences.
- Click here to learn about social hosting laws in your state.
Good Samaritan Laws
- Fear of police involvement is one of the most common reasons for not calling 911 when a friend is in danger or experiencing a medical emergency.
- A number of states have enacted a Good Samaritan law, seeking to offer limited and situational immunity as incentive for providing life-saving measures.
- Let your kids know that if they or a friend is ever in danger, calling for help is critical.
- Learn more about Good Samaritan laws and explore our state map to see if they are enacted in your area.
Access appropriate resources when you need information. Government websites like SAMHSA and NIAAA are great sources, and you can always find more on Responsibility.org and AskListenLearn.org. Teach your kids that reputable information usually comes from .gov, .edu, and .org websites.