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Judge John E. Turner (Ret.)

How parents can influence their kids against underage drinking

Washington parents may be interested to learn that, according to a survey of underage teenagers and young adults, having clear rules set by parents had some impact on whether or not they drank alcohol. The survey included responses from more than 1,100 underage individuals and young adults from seven different states.

Results of the survey showed that those who were given clear rules about alcohol from their parents were 35 percent less likely to attend a party that included alcohol within the last 30 days when compared to teens who did not have rules regarding underage drinking. Even 60 percent of those who had recently attended parties were alcohol was available were 38 percent less likely to drink if they were given clear rules than those who were not.

While the results could potentially empower families to influence their children, it should be noted that these findings were only preliminary. Further research should be done to determine what type of rules are most effective in preventing underage individuals from drinking. Additionally, there may be other associated rules that prevented the kids from drinking, such as curfews. Additional information about the participants and their parents, such as their birth order, religious and the parents' history of drinking, may also be helpful.

Underage drinking can potentially lead to other dangerous activities, such as driving while under the influence. Regardless of their age, people who have been accused of drunk driving could face serious consequences if a conviction is obtained. As a result, they may want to have legal assistance in attempting to combat the allegations. One potential defense strategy that could be employed under some circumstances could be to challenge the initial traffic stop as being conducted without probable cause.

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