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Local coalition boosts efforts in underage drinking and suicide prevention Read more: Iron County Today - Local coalition boosts efforts in underage drinking and suicide prevention

Jul 14, 2015

IRON COUNTY – The Iron County Prevention Coalition, a group comprised of people interested in the development of local youth, recently received two grants to help fund underage drinking prevention and suicide prevention efforts in the county. The grants were awarded from Parents Empowered, a state underage drinking prevention campaign, and the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

Coming less than a year after it was organized, these grants are the first the coalition has received, said Heidi Baxley, the Iron County Prevention Coalition coordinator. They were awarded in the amount of $10,000 from Parents Empowered and $8,400 from NAMI.

The Iron County Prevention Coalition is made up of approximately 35 to 40 people from different local agencies and meets monthly to determine ways to reduce the predictors of problem behaviors in the community, Baxley said.

With the Parents Empowered grant, the coalition plans to help educate the public about the resources available at www.parentsempowered.org, a program focused on helping parents understand the importance of knowing where their kids are and what they are doing, Baxley said.

The state program places an emphasis on getting to know friends and educating parents about the realities of underage drinking. Baxley said more than half of underage drinkers in the county get their alcohol from parties and from adults 21 or older.

With the NAMI grant, the coalition plans to offer QPR classes to the community. QPR is a suicide prevention technique, which stands for question, persuade and refer. Baxley said the classes will allow more community members, especially those who work with youth and families, to understand exactly what to do when they see the signs and symptoms of suicide. The two-hour training course will include dinner and free child care to incentivize more people to register, Baxley added.

The NAMI grant will also allow the coalition to introduce Hope Squads into the local schools. Hope Squads, originally initiated by Hope4Utah as a suicide prevention tactic in schools, are “the eyes and ears of (a) school,” according to the Hope4Utah website. “They are comprised of students who are trained to watch for at-risk students – provide friendship, identify warning signs, and seek help from adults.” Iron County Prevention Coalition also has plans to celebrate National Suicide Prevention Week in the local schools, thanks to the grant.

In addition to these efforts, the coalition is focused on assessing the good that is going on in Iron County and doing what is needed to fill in the gaps, Baxley said. The grants will last for a year and Baxley said community members should expect to see an increased presence of the Iron County Prevention Coalition at different community events and in the schools.

“We’re really trying to make ourselves more known in the community so we can get these resources out there to families,” Baxley added.

Read more:Iron County Today - Local coalition boosts efforts in underage drinking and suicide prevention

Booze bottle tags show steep fines for giving minors alcohol

Jul 14, 2015

HOLLADAY, Utah (AP) — Liquor bottles will bear sale tags this summer that remind adults that giving alcohol to minors can mean a possible $2,500 fine and up to a year in jail.

The partnership between law enforcement, state agencies and an organization running a campaign to end underage drinking is meant to get adults to look twice at what could happen if they enable underage drinking, the Deseret News reported (http://bit.ly/1FYEmgO).

ParentsEmpowered.org co-chairman Art Brownsaid at a liquor store in Holladay last week that underage drinkers often are supplied by adults.

"It can really send them down the wrong path, and it's really hard for them to stop," Brown said. "There just isn't any good that comes to kids from drinking underage."

Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control regional manager Val Dunaway says officials are always on the lookout for underage buyers and adult redistributors of alcohol, but that vigilance is especially important in the summer.

"We are always on guard," Dunaway said. "We watch for minors on a daily basis, but the summer months are the bigger months for us."

Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Todd Royce says more juveniles are caught drinking during the summer than other times of year.

"Parents are the first line of defense," Royce said. "By the time it gets to me out there on the roadway, it's too late."

New Tags In Liquor Stores Warn Of Underage Drinking Costs

Jul 14, 2015

The Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control has teamed up with other Utah organizations including parentsempowered.org to educate adults of the costs of underage drinking.

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, underage drinking increases during summer months. In Utah, red and white tags will appear throughout the summer in state liquor stores. The tags are meant to remind buyers that there is a $2,500 fine and the possibility of a jail sentence for giving alcohol to anyone under the age of 21.

“Alcohol and minors just aren’t a good thing,” said Doug Murakami, director of alcohol education with the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control. “It doesn’t help kids one bit. We know of nothing good that comes from underage drinking.”

According to Doug Murakami, this new approach is one of many that the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control is using in an effort to prevent underage drinking.

“We felt it was a clever way just to let the public know that there are, you know, severe penalties for providing alcohol,” Murakami said.

Although Utah has the lowest rates of underage drinking in the nation, Murakami said it is still important for parents to not become complacent. He said 30 percent of kids who drink say they get their alcohol from their parents.

“Parents are doing a terrific job in Utah. You know, Utah has the lowest rates of underage drinking in the nation,” Murakami said. “But I think one thing that we need to always remind parents, is that although you know that sounds good, and that is good news, there are pockets throughout the state where the underage use rates for drinking really are the same as any other city in the nation. So we can’t be complacent and say we don’t have a problem.”

According to statistics taken from a Student Health and Risk Prevention survey, in Utah, many kids now begin drinking in elementary school. 

For more or to listen.

Utah liquor stores use price tags to warn about underage drinking

Jul 7, 2015

HOLLADAY — With the Fourth of July approaching, various liquor bottles across the state were marked with big, red sale tags Thursday.

The sale price: $2,500.

That's what it will cost if the buyer is caught giving alcohol to minors. In addition to the fine, the crime is punishable by up to a year in jail, the tags state.

The "sale prices" are meant to draw double takes from alcohol purchasers and remind them of the consequences they could face if they supply underage drinkers.

The tags will remain scattered throughout Utah liquor stores through the summer, a time when schools are out and kids have more free time and less parental supervision.

The tags are a part of a campaign to remind adults to fight underage drinking, not facilitate it.

The initiative stems from a partnership between the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, the Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health, the Utah Highway Patrol and ParentsEmpowered.org, a campaign to stop underage drinking.

By Katie McKellar   |  Posted Jul 3rd, 2015 @ 7:37pm

Full article here

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