SOUTHINGTON STEPS COALITION NEWSLETTER


December 2017
IN THIS ISSUE:
PREVENTION AWARENESS CT SOCIAL HOST LAW |  
BEER IS A CONCERN | PREVENTION WITH POLICE | DROP BOX POSTERS YOUTH COUNCIL VOLUNTEERS | HAPPY HOLIDAYS  
 
PREVENTION AWARENESS
Underage Drinking   
On an average December day, more than 11,000 young people in the United States, aged 12 to 17, will use alcohol for the first time. Some of these young adults will not make it to the New Year, as nearly 400 young people under age 21 die from alcohol-related causes every month, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. 
 
Alcohol is the most widely misused substance among America's youth. Consumption of alcohol by anyone under the age of 21, also known as underage drinking, remains a considerable public health challenge. Adolescent alcohol use is not an acceptable rite of passage, but a serious threat to adolescent development and health. Medical research shows that the developing adolescent brain may be  particularly susceptible to long-term negative consequences of alcohol use .  To learn more from SAMHSA about underage drinking, Visit here.

Teachers, parents, guardians, families and communities must come together to prevent underage drinking during the holidays. 
 
Some of the ways STEPS makes underage drinking prevention a priority in Southington:
  1. Compliance Checks for Restaurants & Package Stores
  2. Merchant Education 
  3. Educating Students & Teachers
  4. Educating Parents & Community Members on the CT Social Host Law
  5. TIPS (Training for Intervention Procedures)
  6. Prom PROMise
CONNECTICUT SOCIAL HOST LAW  
It is against the law to knowingly permit any minor to possess alcohol anywhere, whether it is on public or private property.  Check out our website to learn more.

Many well-intentioned parents think that letting their child drink in their home will teach them how to drink responsibly and will prevent them from drinking elsewhere. Early consumption of alcohol in any context increases the likelihood of problems in the long-run. 

Expressing disapproval of drinking alcohol before the legal age is something that has been shown to decrease the risk of later alcohol related problems. In short, parents are powerful influences on drinking behavior. If you approve of underage drinking at home, your teenager will interpret that message to mean you approve of drinking, even if you tell them not to drink with their friends. If you do not approve of drinking at home, chances are they will be less likely to drink elsewhere. Moreover, parents may not know that in their state, they may be subject to civil and criminal penalties (including jail time and fines) if minors drink alcohol in their homes.  Follow this link to read more about Connecticut's Social Host Law.

 
WHY THE SAYING 'IT'S JUST BEER...' IS SO DANGEROUS  
Young people are more vulnerable than adults to some of the effects of alcohol.  Evidence shows that the later teenagers delay their alcohol drinking, the less likely they are to become regular consumers as an adult and avoid alcohol-related problems later in life.  The earlier a person starts drinking alcohol, the greater the risk of changing the development of the brain.
 
Alcohol affects two crucial parts of the brain which are vulnerable when a teenager is developing. This can result in irreversible brain changes that can impact decision making, personality, memory and learning.  
 
Alcohol affects cells in the body and the most immediate impacts are seen on the brain. Alcohol is a depressant that affects the brain by causing the brain to slow down. This can result in:
  • Slurred speech
  • Poor muscle control and judgement
  • Confusion
  • Slower reactions
  • Poor vision
  • Lack of coordination
  • Sleep disruption 

PREVENTION WITH POLICE
The STEPS Coalition is proud to partner with the Southington Police Department.
Pictured below is Deputy Chief Bill Palmieri from the Southington Police Department, helping us spread our prevention messages here in the Southington community! Be sure to listen for his new holiday message at the gas pumps through AMP Radio Network!   


MEDICATION DROP BOX POSTERS
Hot off the press! Medication Drop Box posters have been created and are available for your business or organization! Contact us for the delivery of yours!


YOUTH COUNCIL 
The young leaders on the STEPS Youth Council continue to work together to make substance abuse prevention a priority here in Southington. By focusing efforts on prevention, they are able to provide our community with a wealth of knowledge and resources to help teens refrain from risk-taking behaviors and keep parents #InTheKnow.

 
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
 
 
Be sure to list volunteer opportunities for students at  Southington Serves.
 

On behalf of the STEPS Coalition staff, we would like to wish the entire Southington community a Happy and Healthy Holiday Season!



Southington STEPS | (860) 276-6285  |   southingtonsteps@gmail.com

 



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