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Underage Alcohol Use

Many normal life activities have ages when young people can safely start them. A person must wait until age 16 to start driving, age 18 to marry without parental consent, age 35 to become president, and so on. The drinking age is 21 for a reason – it is based on research, which shows that young people react differently to alcohol.

Laws that prevent underage drinking help protect the maturing brains of young people. Although these laws exist, our cultural and social norms give different messages. Alcohol is one of the most commonly misused substances in the United States.

All these reasons are why prevention of alcohol use among young people is a priority for STEPS .

Data on Southington

In Southington alone, there are currently 89 liquor permits in our 36 square mile town, which includes grocery stores, package stores, cafes, restaurants, hotels and clubs.

% of youth that report their parents would disapprove of underage drinking

89%

in 2009

97%

Today

Yet 54.8% of youth who have used alcohol report getting it from home WITH their parents’ permission.

% of youth that report a high perception of risk associated with alcohol use

68%

in 2009

84%

Today

14% of students report using alcohol once or more in the last 30 days.

A 44% decrease since 2010!

41% of 11th graders report attending parties where other kids their age were drinking

Southington Town-Wide Effort to Promote Success

STEPS Prevention Efforts

  • Enforcement and Compliance Checks with the Southington Police Department
  • Social Host marketing campaigns
  • Social Host education activities
  • TIPS Trainings
  • ID Guides and training materials to restaurants and bars in town
  • Safe Prom campaign
  • Ordinance regarding alcohol advertisements
  • IDEA Sticks
  • Liquor Stickers
  • Let’s #MentionPrevention

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1. Search Institute survey of Southington students in grades 7, 9, 11, 2022
STEPS Underage Alcohol Use Prevention

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