Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Pacific D/L (Hyatt Regency San Francisco)
* noted as presenting author
Underage drinking parties are events that often entail high levels of drinking and alcohol-related consequences. As a result, many communities across the U.S. are pursuing strategies—often including passage of local social host ordinances (SHOs)--to prevent or reduce the number and size of underage drinking parties. This study uses a community-based participatory approach to assess the impact of local efforts to implement a comprehensive set of environmental strategies to address underage drinking parties as a high-risk setting for youth drinking. 12 Intervention Communities and 12 Delayed Intervention Communities across 7 states (NY, GA, IN, IA, CO, NM, CA) are participating in the study. The research team provides technical assistance, training, and modest financial support to build the capacity of an existing substance abuse prevention coalition in each of the Intervention Communities to conduct a comprehensive assessment of the problem and plan and implement environmental strategies, such as social host ordinances, designed to prevent underage drinking parties. Eleven of 12 Intervention Communities chose to pursue passage of a local SHO, in concert with enforcement and public education efforts. To date, five of these communities have passed an ordinance. This presentation will describe the intervention approach we are employing in this study, and discuss the distinct challenges of using this approach to support effective policy and enforcement efforts.