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Research indicates that the average age of first use of alcohol is now 11 years old. It is especially concerning that young people in New Jersey appear to be experimenting with alcohol at a rate above what is reported nationally. Approximately 407,000 underage youth in New Jersey report that they drank alcohol in the past year. The Childhood Drinking Coalition was created in response to these findings and the fact that alcohol continues to be the most widely used and abused drug by America’s young people.
The Childhood Drinking Coalition (CDC), a subcommittee of the Bergen County Prevention Coalition, has a diverse membership that includes parents, police officers, prevention professionals, municipal alliance members, college students, business owners and other volunteers who organize initiatives related to childhood and underage drinking in Bergen County. The group addresses local issues, advocates for effective policy change, actively participates in events that discourage underage drinking (such as: Sticker Shock Campaigns and Town Hall Meetings), and educates the community about underage drinking and ways to manage it.
Sticker Shock is a campaign conducted with your local liquor provider to increase awareness of the consequences of providing alcohol to those under the legal age of consumption, 21. Stickers are placed on cases of product, near the register or on posters in the store advising consumers of the potential penalties for purchasing alcohol for minors.