Underage Drinking & the Law

What parents need to know now about the new Social Host Laws

Arizona town lowers the burden of proof to…none

The Town Council of Buckeye, Arizona has passed a multilevel Social Host Ordinance with penalties that range from civil violation and a $250 fine to criminal charges and over $2,500 in various fines.

The bad news is that the race to throw away our legal rights has been won by the Way Out West Coalition in order to prevent a trumped-up crisis of underage drinking.  According to Jackee Coe’s article, Buckeye’s version of the Social Host Ordinance includes “a ‘host presumption’ provision” which states that “adults who ‘knew or should have known‘ about the alcohol but didn’t take appropriate steps to prevent it will be held accountable, even if they were not home at the time.”

The good news is that, according to Vice Mayor Brian McAchran, they plan to educate the public and to reassess the ordinance based on how effectively it reduces underage drinking parties. Let’s hope the citizens of Buckeye hold him to his promise.
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To learn more:
Buckeye social-host drinking law focuses on adult enablers. The Arizona Republic – March 4, 2011 – Byline: Jackee Coe

3 comments on “Arizona town lowers the burden of proof to…none

  1. Ashlyn Earven
    July 22, 2016

    I’m confused as to what they would consider an adult in this situation. Would an adult be an 18 year old who lives on his/her own? What are the stipulations here? They should be more specific min their ordinances.

  2. Endless
    March 21, 2011

    “Should have known”? Those are the scariest three words I’ve ever seen in legal ordinance.
    No one should have to serve up to 6 month sin jail because their kids were too tricky for them

    • H. M. Epstein
      March 24, 2011

      I agree, Endless. Although, “You’re under arrest” sounds mighty scary, too.

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