State launches new campaign against underage drinking

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - 17% of middle school students across the state report they had their first alcoholic drink before the age of 11. That's according to Lt. Gov. Duke Aiona, who proclaimed this week 'We Don't Serve to Teens Week' in Hawaii.

As part of a new campaign against underage drinking, the state and its partners are distributing information about the effects of alcohol on children. They hope parents will take the newspaper inserts, and sit down and talk with their kids about the risks.

"Parent disapproval is the number one reason children choose not to drink," Aiona said. "Parents are the number one influence in their children's lives."

Aiona says underage drinking can lead to violence, poor academic performance, risky sexual behavior and alcohol addiction.

The new campaign also includes public service announcements and posters on buses.