Get Behind Zero Tolerance Laws Zero tolerance laws reinforce the minimum drinking age. They make it illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to drive with a measurable amount of alcohol in their blood (a BAC of higher than .00 to .02, depending on the specific law). Zero tolerance laws can make teens automatically lose their license for underage drinking violations. Avoiding this penalty can motivate young people who value the privilege of driving. Encourage your public safety officials to actively enforce these laws in your community. Zero tolerance laws reduce traffic deaths of young people. Learn more online at: madd.org / powerofparents
Respect their concerns, even when maintaining limits. Respect teens’ urge for independence. However, it is still important to set clear rules against alcohol use and know where your teens are. Phase in freedoms and challenges. Gradually reduce parental control so teens have more freedom and responsibility with each passing year—yet maintain limits against underage drinking.
STRATEGIES THAT HELP A TEEN SUCCEED
Teens are less likely to drink alcohol when their parents: Empower choices. Encourage teens to make their own choices, even relatively minor ones, such as picking a place for the family dinner, choosing a movie to go see, and so on. Sometimes choices can be framed by the parent in ways that the teen is choosing between two desirable alternatives. Give calm guidance. Offer clear-headed discussion and guidance about choices teens face that are important to their life path.
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