Coalition issues warning for parents

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Cassville Community 2000 (C2000) Coalition is warning parents that summer time is a prime time for teen substance use.

"It is important for parents and guardians to be aware that summertime results in a peak of substance use and abuse among teenagers," said Cassville Police Chief Dana Kammerlohr, who serves as the Cassville C2000 chairwoman. "Parties that teenagers attend may offer alcohol, which damages their developing brain and reduces their impulse control, resulting in poor decision making that can lead to risky sexual behavior, impaired driving and other dangerous behaviors."

According to a press release issued by the coalition, 75 percent of students have consumed alcohol by their senior year in high school. Underage drinking and the use of other substances, such as marijuana, prescription drugs and synthetic drugs like bath salts, K3 and Spice, increase during the summer months.

Although family vacations, camps and work occupy a portion of teens' lives, youth often become bored during the summer and seek unhealthy options to fill their time. Curiosity and peer pressure also lead teens to start or increase their consumption of addicting, reality altering drugs.

The Cassville C2000 Coalition encourages parents to talk with teens about the dangers of underage drinking and drug abuse and be aware of who their children are spending time with and what activities teens are engaging in during the summer. Talking with other parents is also a good way to ensure teens are not receiving alcohol at another home.

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