On Wednesday, February 26th, the Alliance of Coalitions for Change (AC4C), a state-wide collaboration to effect positive change in substance abuse, met with the state legislators to discuss their concerns about underage drinking and substance use in Iowa.
The Van Buren County Youth Leadership Council was among several community coalitions, representing a mixture of Iowa’s rural and urban populations at this event.
Multiple prevention strategies are occurring throughout the state of Iowa, resulting in significant decreases in underage drinking. Yet, major problems still remain: Iowa still ranks in the top 10 states for underage (age 12-20) binge drinking.
The 2012 Iowa Youth Survey showed 19% of Iowa 11th graders reporting binge drinking in the past 30 days. This is down from 24% in 2010. This remains more than one out of every five 11th grader in Iowa that report engaging in binge drinking in the past month.
Past 30 day use of alcohol and binge drinking numbers are decreasing for Iowa teens, but underage binge drinking is still very high compared to other states. This is still an issue that needs to be addressed in our state and community.
The AC4C press conference was held in the West Hall of the 1stfloor rotunda 11:30 A.M. until to 12:00 P.M. Media, legislators and the public were encouraged to attend. Van Buren County’s own Lydia Heald spoke during the press conference to help inform our state of the issues in substance abuse that are facing our state currently.