THE NEWS CHICK BLOG

Who’s supplying teen drinkers in Washington state?

Mar 29, 2010, 1:02 PM | Updated: Mar 28, 2011, 3:46 pm

More than a quarter of young people between the ages of 12 and 20 drank alcohol in the past month, and a lot of them got the booze from parents or other adults.

That’s according to a survey by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Their survey is timed with the launch today of a big social media campaign to encourage parents to talk to their children, at an early age, about drinking alcohol.

img 4 0 print2 fullsize

I have talked with my teen about drinking and the pressures she might face. But my image of teens getting a bottle of alcohol or some beer and sneaking it past their parents isn’t as shocking as the reality I faced a couple of weeks ago. At a party to celebrate a successful musical production, students – between 14 and 18 – were doing Jello shots and “getting super drunk.”

“Where were the parents while this was happening?” I asked my daughter.

“They were there,” she says. “They didn’t try to stop anybody from drinking.”

Lovely.

I wanted to get on the phone instantly and ask the parents, “What are you thinking?” But, I didn’t. I don’t know the parents, and my teen didn’t drink. Still, I think I should have said something. What would you do?

Alcohol is the most widely abused substance among teens. In Washington state, about 30 percent of young adults say they had alcohol in the past month. Less than six percent of those who drank purchased the alcohol. Most reported it was given to them, or easily accessible at their parents’ houses.

According to the new study, North Dakota and Vermont have the highest underage drinking use at about 40 percent. Utah’s rate was the lowest around 13 percent.

Here’s the online campaign starting up to help parents talk to teens about drinking, and the TV ads which all carry the tag line that “real kids are curious about alcohol.”

The News Chick Blog

The wife of Seattle attorney Danford Grant moved his car away from one of the alleged crime scenes ...

No Author

Equal justice for Seattle lawyer accused of several rapes?

Has accused serial rapist Danford Grant gotten preferential treatment because both he and his wife are Seattle attorneys?

11 years ago

The Seattle-based I Can Has Cheezburger network now includes 60 humor sites. Many of their 90 emplo...

No Author

Seattle humor network, built with funny cat pictures, becomes a reality TV show

A small Internet empire with a funny name has billions of page views on its network of 60 humor websites based in Seattle. Now, I Can Has Cheezburger has a reality TV show too.

11 years ago

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney spent a combined $30.33 every second this election cycle. Wa...

No Author

Democracy and dollar signs – 2012 campaign spending

Washington initiative campaigns spent $34 million trying to win your vote, while President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney spent a combined $30.33 every second this election cycle.

11 years ago

Chef Tom Douglas says Seattle’s restaurants are ‘a little homemade’ compared with...

No Author

Chef Tom Douglas says ‘Seattle is a funny restaurant town’

Chef and restaurateur Tom Douglas, with 13 Seattle restaurants and more on the way, says Seattle is a "funny restaurant town."

11 years ago

Investigation continues into why a commander of the Bremerton-based Stennis carrier group was remov...

No Author

New ‘crazy’ conspiracy theory on Stennis Rear Admiral

The Pentagon shoots down theories about why the commander of the USS Stennis Carrier Group was removed from duty and sent back to the homeport in Bremerton.

11 years ago

Seattle photographer Paul Souders captures an adult polar bear up close in Hudson Bay in Churchill,...

No Author

Seattle photographer comes face to face with a polar bear

A wildlife photographer, who lives in Ballard, has taken thousands of stunning shots. None put him on "a razor's edge" more than a series of photos swimming with a polar bear.

11 years ago

Who’s supplying teen drinkers in Washington state?