It’s not just kids that need alcohol education on the hazards of underage drinking. It’s parents, too.
Underage drinking parties, many of them parent-hosted, are on the rise throughout the county, according to a Gazette report released Wednesday.
At a Jan. 26 press conference, Montgomery County Police displayed stacks of kegs and 24-packs of beer seized from underage drinking parties in the county. A task force of local police agencies busted 23 underage drinking parties and issued 239 alcohol citations to youth in possession of or providing alcohol, between Nov. 16 and Jan. 7, said Capt. Thomas Didone of the Montgomery County Police Department. Six underage drivers in violation of alcohol restrictions were also arrested, The Gazette reported.
“Studies have shown when parents host or enable drinking parties that youth tend to drink more and feel empowered to drink at other times,” Didone told The Gazette.
Providing alcohol to a minor is a civil violation with fines up to $2,500 for a first offense and $5,000 for subsequent offenses, according to county police.
Parents who host an underage drinking party can be charged $500 per minor for a first offense and $1,000 per minor for a second offense, Maura Lynch, a former Montgomery County assistant state’s attorney, told The Gazette.
What do you think of this rising trend? How can parents work to help stop underage drinking? Are parents entirely to blame?