Friday, June 03, 2016
(Monticello, NY 3:30pm) - As summer approaches there are many events such as high school graduations, proms and other celebrations of our youth in which underage drinking parties can be prevalent. Sullivan County Officials want to remind our residents of the County’s Social Host Law.
“Underage drinking is a widespread issue in not only Sullivan County but around the world. Parents and adults need to be aware that they will be held accountable for allowing this behavior in their presence,” stated Luis Alvarez, Chairman of the Sullivan County Legislature. “Let us unify to send a message to our children that there are life-long ramifications for mistakes made early in life,” continued Alvarez.
The County’s Social Host Law is aimed at deterring minors from the consumption of alcoholic beverages by holding anyone 18 years of age or older responsible to knowingly allow the consumption of alcohol or alcoholic beverages or drugs by any minor on premises.
“The prom and graduation season should be a time of celebration and joy, not a time of tragedy. The message to our parents in Sullivan County is clear: set the proper example and do not permit underage drinking in your homes or on your property. Your actions could prevent a tragedy,” stated James Farrell, Sullivan County District Attorney.
Violations of the Social Hosts Law impose penalties for those found to be responsible for the property on which the prohibited activities occur. Penalties include fines of $500 to $1,000, completion of awareness programs and potential jail time.
“The Sheriff’s Office has zero tolerance for underage drinking and the use of illegal drugs. This law is intended to protect our youth and the unnecessary tragedies that occur too often at this time every year,” stated Michael A. Schiff, Sullivan County Sheriff.
“There are many events this time of year for our youth to celebrate all of their accomplishments and studies show that alcohol is the most commonly used drug amongst adolescents,” stated County Manager Joshua Potosek. “It is vital for our communities and parents to discourage underage drinking,” continued Potosek.
According to the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, about 9.3 million persons aged 12 to 20 (24.3 percent of this age group) reported drinking alcohol in the past month and an estimated 11.2 percent of persons aged 12 or older drove under the influence of alcohol at least once in the past year.
“I want to congratulate our youth in Sullivan County for their accomplishments and encourage our parents to provide a safe and healthy environment for them to celebrate,” stated Terri Ward, District 4 Legislator and Chair of the Public Safety and Law Enforcement Committee. “Join us in our message that underage consumption of alcohol or drugs is not tolerated in Sullivan County,” continued Ward.
For more information about this press release, please contact Josh Potosek, County Manager, at 845-807-0450.