Did you know that the cost of a citation for underage drinking can range from $500 to $1,200? Or that a citation for possession of an open alcoholic beverage container can cost up to $300?
With Homecoming festivities scheduled for this weekend, it is important to understand the consequences of drinking alcohol and plan to make smart choices before consuming alcohol.
If you are of legal age to drink, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and Healthy Husky recommend these steps for the next time you go out:
First, eat before drinking because food helps to absorb and breakdown alcohol. Also, make sure to drink water while you are out. This will keep you hydrated and slow the pace of your alcohol consumption.
Never leave your drink unattended. Doing so is dangerous because it results in the opportunity for someone to add something harmful to your drink. So, have a friend watch your drink if you have to go to the bathroom. If you leave it, simply dump it out and get a new one.
When you drink, sip slowly. Chugging can increase your blood alcohol content (BAC) quickly which can be dangerous. Your body cannot process too much alcohol all at once.
Sit down and make a plan. Talk to your friends about your plan for the night and how you will get home. Stick together as a group the entire time you are out.
With an eventful weekend like Homecoming, it is also important to remember The Medical Amnesty Law, which states:
If a person, in good faith, calls and believes they are the first to call 911, police, an ambulance or BUPD and gives their name and stays with the person to prevent that person’s death or serious injury, then the caller is immune from prosecution for consumption or possession of alcohol.
So, what really happens when you get caught for underage drinking? At Bloomsburg University, you will be written up by the police and then it is reported back to the school.
You are contacted to set up a meeting with the Dean of Students Office to talk about your next steps going forward. From there, you will meet with Margarete Hahn from the DAWN Office to discuss making smart choices in the future and to set up alcohol workshops that you must attend.
Along with these workshops, you will also have community service hours to complete and fines that will all affect your standing as a student at BU if they are not completed and paid.
If you have any questions, concerns or would like to learn more about making smart choices about alcohol use, you can contact Margarete Hahn, DAWN Coordinator, at [email protected]