According to a findings of a five- year prevention effort, fewer teens and pre-teens in Tennessee are abusing alcohol.
Lead by the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (TDMHSAS), the state's efforts achieved reductions in binge drinking well beyond the national average.
During a period from 2009 – 2013, the statewide rate of binge drinking teens, between the ages of 14 and 17, dropped nearly 16%. In the 18 to 25 age range, the decrease was more than 5%.
“Recognizing that there is a problem is the first step. The reduction in binge drinking speaks to a concerted effort by anti-drug community coalitions in the state, treatment providers, families, and young people themselves,” said said E. Douglas Varney, Commissioner of the TDMHSAS.
Rates of young people driving drunk, getting arrested, being involved in fatal car accidents and other alcohol related offenses went down.
Alcohol Related Arrests - 25%
Juvenile DUI Arrests - 24%
Alcohol Related Traffic Fatalities - 14%
Driving while Intoxicated - 14%
Riding with a Driver who was Drinking - 11%
“Consuming significant amounts of alcohol can put anyone in danger of harm to themselves and others. Young people are especially at risk. I'm so glad to see how prevention efforts are working to encourage young people to avoid binge drinking and keeping them out of danger and from possible death,” said Varney.