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Most Teens Don’t Drink Alcohol
By MADD | October 21, 2013| 7 Comments | Filed in: Underage Drinking

A new survey of high school students shows that three out of four (77 percent) don’t drink alcohol.

As part of Red Ribbon Week (October 21-25, 2013) — a  nationally-observed week during which schools and communities help raise awareness about the dangers of drugs and alcohol among youth — MADD and State Farm are highlighting the finding that most teens are making smart decisions about alcohol.

(Click here to see the full infographic)

According to the September 2013 survey of 695 high school students nationwide, the top five reasons why teens choose not to drink are:

  1. It’s illegal
  2. Effect on health 
  3. Effect on grades
  4. Parents don’t approve
  5. Don’t want to be like others who drink

In addition, over half of the teens surveyed said that they’d be less likely to be friends with, or date, someone who drinks underage.

As adults, we know how dangerous underage drinking is for our kids, but these new survey results show that teens are getting the message too. MADD and State Farm are partnering to reinforce this positive message during Red Ribbon Week in an effort to influence the 23 percent of teens who do drink, to make smarter choices.

While these survey results provide some positive news, the reality is that 4,700 people still die each year as a result of underage drinking — more than all other drugs combined. That’s why MADD created the Power of You(th) program to empower teens to avoid alcohol before age 21, in part by helping to promote a positive social norm.



Submitted by t at 07:28 PM on March 2, 2014
I not understand.
Submitted by Anonymous at 11:28 AM on November 28, 2013
If this survey is accurate, our teens are woefully ignorant of the law. In 29 states it is in fact legal for teens to drink with parental consent on private property. In 6 states, teens can drink on private property without parental consent. And in 11 states, teens can drink in bars with parental consent. Forty-five states have some exception to underage drinking prohibitions -- religious, medical, educational.... Most Americans, through their state elected leaders, have been adamant about carving out a statutory parental exception to underage drinking restrictions. A shame teens don't know the law.
Submitted by J at 10:25 PM on October 27, 2013
Yeah, ok. You guys do realize students lie on these surveys, right? Smh.
Submitted by catwalker111 at 04:17 PM on October 27, 2013
I see the mad mothers know how to add. They are turning in the government acting ways. Yes the source is starting with the teens but you mad mothers have no clue.
Submitted by reporter at 10:46 AM on October 24, 2013
what about the tobacco companies paying companies like ymca to be against the e-hooka, it is vapor no nicotine, they are helping the getting kids on cigs. what is wrong with kids on e-hooka, keeps them off cigs, i am looking for every company the tobacco companies are paying to be against the e-hooka, epa and fda backs this thing, it is safe and does no harm, the ymca wants money, they do not need anyone to fund them, the tobacco companies are doing it to get our kids on cigs, what is wrong with kids on e-hooka, it keeps them off cigs.
Submitted by CC at 01:24 PM on October 23, 2013
OK so what age is right to teach your kid to drink? I see parents who start at 15 and I think this is way to young. Parents need to start teaching kids how to have fun without drinking. Teach your kids they do not have to be cool by drinking. I agree by 18 kids should be taught to drink but not earlier.
Submitted by mr. smith at 06:11 PM on October 22, 2013
First of all, these surveys are definitely not accurate. What high school student in their right mind, would actually be honest with these surveys? Unless, they were surveying religious schools down south in the bible belt. Im sure none of that was taken into consideration. Perhaps there wouldn't be such an issue if our country just made drinking and driving completely illegal, rather than giving us limits. Its the psychology of that "grey" area that keeps us guessing whether or not we could drive after a drink or two. Europe, for example does not have problems with drinking and driving, and drunk driving accidents, due to a zero tolerance law. It does not allow for that psychology to second guess whether or not your okay. Of course, the chances of our country, or states to make a zero tolerance law is very slim, because then the amount of people getting into trouble would significantly be lowered which means the amount of money each state makes off of DUIs DWAIs would lower. Also, in Europe, children drink wine with their parents, starting at a young age. They are taught to respect alcohol, and learn how to use it responsibly. Over here, in America, we make it look like it is so awful UNTIL your 21, then its GO TIME, party party party. There is no teaching on the respect of alcohol, and how to be responsible. Especially, with all the media influence. Our media and entertainment, teaches children, once your 21, YOU CAN PARTY WITH OUT HAVING TO WORRY!! 21 is also a bit of a late age to be introduced to legal alcohol consumption. Kids start college at 18, and are able to die for our country at 18...Maybe if they were taught at a younger age, BEFORE they leave to go make mistakes at college, they would learn to make better choices. WHAT COLLEGE KID AT 18 ISNT GOING TO DRINK?!!! COME ON PEOPLE! and what 18 year isn't going to drink because their parents don't approve?? That's the biggest crock....I think people need to wake up and stop assuming their child is an angel...I see a lot of parents who use their children's friends as scape goats because they don't want to believe that their child is drinking.

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