Underage Drinking & the Law

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

1991-2011 Trends in Binge-Drinking or Risk-Taking by Grades 9 through 12

This data is from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) which is a bi-annual study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. YRBSS monitors six types of health-risk behaviors that contribute to the leading causes of death and disability among youth and adults, including alcohol use.

While all agree that any risky behavior while drinking is unwelcome, including the underage drinking itself, it’s nice to report that all of the following behaviors are at historic lows: binge drinking, drinking and driving, riding in a car with someone else who drank and trial of alcohol before age 13. The 2011 YRBSS data isn’t as encouraging as the 2011 MTF results which indicate a lower level of binge drinking across the board.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) have a great deal to feel good about, as well. High school students who drive report extraordinarily low levels of drinking and driving, which is in line with the studies on students’ attitudes and perceptions.

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