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It’s Official, Teenagers Nowadays Drink Less Than You Did

Attempts by under-18s to purchase alcohol are down by 75 percent in the UK.
Photo via Flickr user Brian Yap (葉)

Using your sister's ID so you could sip lukewarm tinnies in the park is as much of a teenage rite of passage as dyeing your hair pink, going out with that guy just because he rode a motorised scooter that your dad hated, or bunking off P.E. to smoke Camels round the back of the art block.

But according to a new report, teenagers these days aren't interested in knocking back the Glen's as they channel their inner rebel without a cause.


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A survey carried out by Community Alcohol Partnerships (CAPS), an organisation set up to tackle underage drinking in the UK, found that attempts by under-18s to purchase alcohol were down 75 percent, and seizures of alcohol from underage drinkers in public has fallen by 85 percent.

Those kids are just too cool for White Lightning and car parks.

The report also found that attempts to buy alcohol for minors by those of legal drinking age has decreased by up to 65 percent.

CAPS carried out their research in areas across Britain where schemes to discourage underage drinking had been active for 12 to 18 months. The organisation targets retailers to enforce more stringent age verification methods like Challenge 25, as well as educating young people on the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption and improving diversionary activities, like events at youth centres.

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Organisations like CAPS may be working to eliminate underage drinking in public, but there are still concerns that minors are drinking in the home. A parenting survey published in August by insurance company Churchill showed that a third of parents use alcohol to reward good behaviour, and 49 percent let kids under the age of 14 drink alcohol in the home. It is legal to allow children from five to 14 years old to drink under supervision at home, but advice from the Chief Medical Officer is that alcohol should not be consumed before 15 years.

After all, who knows how teenage boozing might affect you later on in life.