Category Archives: Parents

Underage Drinking in New Jersey: The Scary Truth

Underage drinking is something people often overlook, frequently being viewed as a “rite of passage” or something “all kids do”. People generally think that it will happen regardless of laws, or techniques, which results in parents allowing their children to drink in their own home. Having this mindset leads to underage children not thinking about the repercussions or seeing the hazards of underage drinking. This mindset not only diminishes the perception of risk, but it increases the danger.

Of all alcohol related fatal car accidents, 22.2% were caused by underage drunk drivers, in New Jersey. Of all under 21 driving fatalities, 12.2% were due to alcohol. Due to the relaxed view of underage drinking, children are not thinking about the consequences of driving after. Of all underage persons (age 12-20), 13.1% reported binge drinking in the past 30 days. Binge drinking is finishing 4 drinks in one sitting for females, and 5 drinks in one sitting for males in more than 5 days per month. These percentages seem to really correlate and ultimately, it goes back to parents allowing their children to drink or not stressing the dangers of underage drinking.

There are also a lot of other hazards, besides drinking, with underage drinking. Though underage people do not drink as frequently as adults do, when they do drink, they tend to binge drink. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, 90% of alcohol consumed by underage people, is through binge drinking. With binge drinking comes poor decision making, which is likely why people do get in their cars. It also increases the risk of needing additional medical treatment. It has been found that underage drinking costs 1.6billion dollars yearly.

It is not a rite of passage, underage drinking is a hazard and it is up to parents to educate.

Did you know?

May is National Mental Health Awareness month.  Regardless of age, people often use alcohol and other drugs to self-medicate for other mental health problems, including depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders. Nelba Chavez, Ph.D.,  SAMHSA administrator stated that, “Parents need to know that alcohol use can also be a warning sign or a cry for help that something is seriously wrong in a child’s life” (, 2018). Though illegal, it is easy for underage persons to obtain alcohol either from asking family members, older friends, or even strangers to buy alcohol for them. Understanding the prevalence of underage drinking, the commonalities of it, and the underlying causes can help prevent alcohol abuse and provide needed mental health treatment.

Did you know?

April is Alcohol Awareness Month. This year, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD)  has decided to make the theme “Changing Attitudes:  It’s not a ‘rite of passage.’”.  According to locally collected data, CCSHM  found that this is a commonly occurring theme. At the parent level, in Morris County, there is a widespread acceptance that alcohol is, in fact, a rite of passage, but parents also deny that youth alcohol consumption takes place in their own home. By understanding the risks of underage drinking, we, as a community, can alter the perception of drinking alcohol being a rite of passage. After all, if a youth is drinking as a rite of passage, but not in the home, where are they and how safe can it truly be?

With overdoses on the rise, opioid programs come to Morris

  1. Four Prosecutor’s Office heroin programs heading to Morris towns
    In a continued effort to fight the heroin and opioid epidemic, the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office is hosting four symposiums in several county high schools over the next few weeks.

In Morris County, fatal opiate overdoses jumped from 43 in 2015 to 64 in 2016. There have been at least 23 overdoses so far in 2017, on track to greatly exceed last year’s total.
Prosecutor Fredric Knapp is hoping the ongoing public programs will continue to raise awareness of the heroin and opioid epidemic and show how to combat it.

Prograns will be held in: Montville, Roxbury, Dover, and Kinnelon

Click the link below to read the full story:


Recovery Mentoring in the News

Click the link below to watch “Jersey Matters.”
Morris County Prevention is Key and Center for Addiction, Recovery, and Success (CARES) are featured and discuss some of the new methods we are using to combat addiction.

Reporter, Sherry Karabin, talks with some of the amazing people we work with to learn about the life-saving drug Narcan, and focus on an amazing Mentor Program, to help recovering addicts.

Jersey Matters

Please visit the CARES website to learn more about the Mentor Program and how you can get involved.