A group formed by the country’s alcohol distillers is using this back-to-school time to issue a plea to parents to preach about the dangers of underage boozing.Courtney Means of The Century Council says kids experience new pressures when they go back to school in the fall, and the presence of alcohol might be more prevalent once they resume relationships that were more distant during the summer months.Means says a recent survey commissioned by The Century Council found 65 percent of underage kids get their alcohol from their homes or their friends’ homes, or older siblings or friends are buying the alcohol for them. She says the stat is contrary to the popular belief that underage kids get their booze from a convenience store or at the bar. Just seven percent of the teens who responded to the Council’s survey said they got their alcohol from vendors who didn’t ask for an I.D. Means says parents’ first reaction shouldn’t be to hide the booze in the house.Means says more important than locking up the liquor cabinet is to talk to your child and driving home the importance of making responsible decisions about alcohol. The Century Council found 189 Iowa teenagers were charged with drunken driving in 2001 — the most recent stats available — and about 15-hundred were ticketed for underage drinking, public intox or alcohol possession.
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