Because summer is a time when teen drunk-driving deaths peak and teens are at high risk of starting to drink, the Federal Trade Commission is urging adults around the nation to say “Let’s Make it a Safe Summer. Don’t Serve Alcohol to Teens.”
“Don’t clam up if other adults serve alcohol to your kids,” said Lydia Parnes, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “Don’t buy into the guilt. Don’t buy into the myths about underage drinking.”
The FTC is launching its “Safe Summer” campaign with a Web site, http://www.dontserveteens.gov/safesummer.html, providing information about underage drinking and camera-ready campaign materials that warn against it. Web banners and buttons, downloadable posters and public service announcements, and sample letters to the editor and opinion pieces are included.
For almost a quarter of a century, the national legal drinking age has been 21, and teen drinking during that time has fallen by 25 percent. Despite this achievement, alcohol remains the most widely abused substance among U.S. teens, according to a report released by the U.S. Surgeon General last fall.
Most teens who drink alcohol get it from family members or friends. While the dangers of teen drinking are well documented, many myths persist, and parents may feel pressured by their teenagers and by other adults to look the other way. These are just a few of the myths parents may encounter:
Over the past two years, the We Don’t Serve Teens program has received tremendous assistance from its public and private partners. In 2007, the campaign generated an unprecedented 1.1 billion advertising impressions with a market value of over $9 million, and was recognized by the U.S. Senate and officials from 40 states.
Organizations helping with the We Don’t Serve Teens campaign include the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, American Beverage Licensees, Beer Institute, Distilled Spirits Council, National Alcohol Beverage Control Association, National Association of Broadcasters, National Conference of State Liquor Administrators, National Liquor Law Enforcement Association, National Consumer League, Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools, Outdoor Advertising Association of America, Responsible Retailing Forum, Students Against Destructive Decisions, The Century Council, and Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America.
Join us in making it a safe summer!
(WDST NR 6-10)