Parents urged to keep kids away from booze

27th July 2009.''delinquent youths' ie: Gemma and Lisa disguised in hooded tops to illustrate a young people drinking'PICTURE BY MATTHEW PAGE
27th July 2009.''delinquent youths' ie: Gemma and Lisa disguised in hooded tops to illustrate a young people drinking'PICTURE BY MATTHEW PAGE
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PARENTS are being urged not to buy alcohol for their children after two teenage girls were arrested for being drunk and disorderly.

The girls also allegedly assaulted a police officer during the incident in Hemsworth last month.

Officers from the South Kirkby neighbourhood police team and health officials have now issued a warning to parents who supply booze to under 18s.

Insp Jackie Turton, from the NPT, said: “We have conducted 16 test purchase operations at off licences and not one sold alcohol to underage children. So they must be getting it off their parents.”

Dr Andrew Furber, NHS Wakefield District’s director of public health, said: “Excessive drinking can lead to disastrous health and social consequences for young people and their families.

“If you drink to excess it immediately makes you more vulnerable and prone to risky behaviour. So if you are a parent buying booze for you son or daughter you are putting them at risk of crime, violence and sexual exploitation and long term binge drinking will seriously damage their health.

“We don’t want to see that happening and that’s why we are working hard to tackle these issues. However, there’s a lot that the community as a whole can do to make a difference too. If you are a parent or carer we’d ask you think about your own drinking habits and what impact that might be having on your children and not to buy alcohol for under 18s.

“The younger generation today are increasingly copying the worrying patterns of drinking they see amongst their peers and adults.”

Health problems linked with alcohol use - particularly during childhood - include cancer of the mouth, throat, oesophagus or larynx, breast cancer in women, heart disease or an irregular heartbeat - which can lead to a heart attack - high blood pressure, stroke, liver damage such as cirrhosis and liver cancer, depression, memory loss and dementia.

Medical evidence also shows that drinking too much alcohol can harm brain development in young people.

Alcohol can also lead you to behave in an unacceptable or risky manner, such as carrying out acts of crime or anti-social behaviour, having unprotected sex or taking illegal drugs.

Young people who are concerned with how much they are drinking should call Rebound, the Young People’s Specialist Substance Misuse Service, on 01977 599912.

Anyone with information about people buying alcohol for or selling to underage drinkers should call police on 0845 6060606 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.