Finding a Solution for Underage Drinking In Miami Name: Institution: Underage drinking has continued to represent one of the major concerns facing the US health department. Alcohol use among young people seems a normal thing statistics indicate that initiation into alcohol starts at age 10 and rises up to age 13 where it stagnates…
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In the same population, 24% of them had confessed to have taken alcohol in the past month while 9% reported to have been drunk in the course of the month. This level of consumption is undoubtedly higher than that of other drugs such as tobacco and any other illegal drug. The other concern on alcohol consumption is its high correlation with myriad social, emotional and behavioral problems such as accidents, stealing, depression, involvement in violent behavior, use of illegal drugs and missing school among others (Richard et al 2012). Besides these immediate problems early initiation of alcohol is also associated with complex alcohol related problems in later years. Early consumption of alcohol that is by age 15 also represented a very high likelihood of developing alcohol dependence (Scott Tippetts, et al 2009). This is a likelihood of 4 times more than those who start drinking at age 21. A more current study reveals a similar picture among the youth. A 2005 survey went further and indicated that 5400 young people below the age of 16 get initiated to alcohol on a daily basis (Lipperman-Kreda, Grube & Paschall, 2010). These statistics as well as other more recent and growing studies on alcohol consumption reveal a worrying trend among young people. This calls for prompt action to arrest the growing numbers of underage drinkers. This study focuses on finding a long lasting solution which would complement the ongoing efforts to curb underage drinking in Miami. In United States the legal drinking age is 21, yet the number of underage drinkers’ remains high begging several questions, one of these questions is where do these underage drinkers get alcohol? This is mainly worrying as the law demands that no single establishment should sell alcohol to an underage (Main, 2009). Irrespective of this directive 92.2%, 82.6%, and 62% of 12th, 10th, and 8th grades respectively attested to the fact that accessing alcohol was fairly or very easy. The focus on alcohol supply and access is fundamental to any study seeking to stop the supply of alcohol to the underage (Lipperman-Kreda, Grube & Paschall, 2010). This is because cutting short the supply is the single most effective means of ensuring that under age drinking is curtailed. Studies reveal that alcohol supply to this group mainly comes from social or economic sources. Economic sources represent commercial establishments dealing with alcohol meaning that some of them blatantly ignore the established laws. In regard to social sources, these are mainly home set ups, where this group accesses alcohol when the adults are absent or during parties (Richard et al 2012). Most effort has been directed to curbing alcohol supply to underage drinkers from the commercial set up. This has been targeted through law and directives which are manifested through compliance checks and cops-in-shops. Similar effort has been made in the social settings through such activity as party dispersal programs (Wachtler, 2011). The success of these measures has been evident overtime and it would be misleading to point out that these have not helped in deterring use and possession of alcohol by this grouping. Evidence overtime has shown that tackling of underage drinking through stringent laws and policies is quite effective (Maimo & Christopher, 2012). The evidence of this is seen in cases where a given policy is properly enforced, for instance the school anti-smoking policy was seen to
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