Awareness Campaign on Teen Drinking Launched


Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs
12000 Government Center Parkway, Suite 551
Fairfax, VA 22035-0065
Contact: Merni Fitzgerald, Director of Public Affairs
703-324-3187, TTY 711, Fax 703-324-2010
Media Pager: 703-324-NEWS (6397)
publicaffairs@fairfaxcounty.gov

April 27, 2007

FCPS Joins Fairfax County to Launch
Public Awareness Campaign on Teen Drinking

The Fairfax County School Board and the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors are joining forces with Fairfax County Public Schools School-Community Coalitions to launch a countywide initiative to reduce underage drinking as prom and graduation season approaches. The School Board passed a resolution in support of the initiative at its business meeting on Thursday, April 26, and a resolution supporting the campaign will be adopted at the Board of Supervisors’ meeting on Monday, April 30. A kick-off reception will be held at 8 a.m. on Monday, April 30, in Room 232 at the Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax.

The first phase of this initiative is a nationally recognized program called “Parents Who Host, Lose the Most: Don’t be a party to underage drinking.” This public awareness campaign informs parents and other adults about the legal ramifications and health and safety risks of serving alcohol to teens. The campaign was developed in response to recent surveys that confirm it is generally easy for teens to get alcohol, and many parents host teen parties where alcohol is available. Parents who knowingly allow a person under age 21 other than their own child to remain on their property while consuming or possessing alcoholic beverages can be prosecuted and face jail, fines, and/or loss of property.

Based on the 2005 Fairfax County Youth Survey, close to half of high school seniors who took the survey reported consuming alcohol in a 30-day period, and one in four seniors reported binge drinking in a two-week period. Of those responding to the survey, 19.9 percent aged 16 and older reported driving a car after drinking.

Nineteen FCPS School-Community Coalitions, together with county residents, school officials, county government agencies, local law enforcement groups, the Fairfax County Council of PTAs, Northern Virginia Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the Fairfax Partnership for Youth, Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board, leaders from the faith community, and Inova HealthSource support the initiative.

For more information, contact Diane Eckert, FCPS Safe and Drug Free Youth Section, at 571-423-4278, TTY 711, or diane.eckert@fcps.edu. 

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