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 A SAMHSA Town Hall Meeting

“Our County, Our Health. Our Future.” was held on April 24th from 6:00-7:00 pm in the Eastern Illinois University Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union.  Community leaders discussed the topics of “Social Hosting” and underage alcohol consumption in Coles County.  The event was co-sponsored by Body Electric, CEAD Council’s Prevention Department, and WEIU.  Following are video segments of the panel discussion.

After viewing all of the video segments of the Coles County SAMHSA Town Hall Meeting, please answer three questions concerning the impact this may or may not have had on your opinions at the following web site:  http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/n2HTP6c

Town Hall Intro  Laura Bollan, Director of Healthy Communities at Sarah Bush Lincoln (SBL), provides Illinois Youth Survey statistics concerning underage drinking and defines social hosting.  Featured is the winning video for the 2014 Illinois Liquor Control Commission’s contest, “Your Actions Matter”, by Villa Grove High School students.


Myth Or Truth #1  “Most teens are going to drink alcohol regularly.”

Bollan provides Illinois Youth Survey statistics on the use of alcohol in Coles County compared to state and national data.  Dr. Derek Stout, SBL Emergency Department, shares his experiences in the ER with underage and college age students who have consumed excessive amounts of alcohol.

Myth Or Truth #2  “When teens consume alcohol under adult supervision, there are few consequences.”

The Illinois Law on Social Hosting is presented.  Brian Bower, Coles Co. State’s Attorney, discusses the impact of Driving Under the Influence (DUI).  Marlon Williams, Charleston Police Department School Resource Officer, shares his perspective on parents who allow underage drinking to occur.  CEAD Council’s Prevention Services Area Coordinator, Michelle Eaton, outlines what parents can look for to determine if alcohol is being consumed, the possible consequences of underage drinking, and prevention and treatment programs available through CEAD.

Myth Or Truth #3  “Providing alcohol to teens at home decreases the risk of continued drinking as the teen gets older, and of the teen developing drinking problems later as adults.”

CEAD Council’s Prevention Services Area Coordinator, Michelle Eaton, identifies the health risks of underage drinking.  Eastern Illinois University Director of the Health Education Resource Center, Eric S. Davidson, Ph.D, provides a perspective as related to college students. He discusses the inaccurate perception that students have of peer drinking habits and the influence of environmental factors.

Myth Or Truth #4   “Being ‘too strict’  about adolescent drinking during high school will cause teens to drink more when they first leave home and do not have parental supervision.”

Dr. Eric Davidson, Eastern Illinois University Director of Health Education Resource Center, shares his observations of parent perception of college age students’ consumption of alcohol versus the reality and parental influence on this behavior.  States Attorney, Brian Bower, discusses criminal conduct and consequences.  Officer Williams, Charleston Police Department, and Dr. Stout, SBL Emergency Department, converse about their experiences and Michelle Eaton, CEAD Council’s Prevention Services Area Coordinator, ties the prevention and treatment pieces together.

Town Hall Conclusion   “What can parents do to prevent underage drinking?”

Laura Bollan, SBL Healthy Communities Director, provides a summary.  CEAD Council’s Prevention Services Area Coordinator, Michelle Eaton, describes how parents can participate in the evidenced-based program “Guiding Good Choices” offered by CEAD and gives pointers to establish “Healthy Beliefs and Clear Standards (Protective Factor)”


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