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April is National Alcohol Awareness Month

MADD Reminds Parents of Importance of Talking with Children about Alcohol

Dallas,Texas (PR MediaRelease) April 1, 2016

Throughout April, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) and the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) will join with partners across the state to conduct activities and workshops to urge parents to talk with their children about alcohol and to never ride with a driver who has been drinking.

The numbers are sobering. Last year in Texas, 101 young people from the age of 12 up to 20 were killed in alcohol related crashes, and 70 of those deaths involved drivers under 21 who had been drinking, according to TxDOT.

This month’s activities are leading up to MADD’s PowerTalk 21 Day on April 21, which is the national day for parents to begin ongoing conversations with their children about alcohol. PowerTalk 21 is part of MADD’s Power of Parents® program presented by national presenting sponsor Nationwide and national supporting partner GM Foundation.

“Parents, not peers, have the biggest influence on children when it comes to alcohol use,” said Jaime Gutierrez, MADD Texas Executive Director. “Talking with your children is the first step. Our Power of Parents program gives parents the tools they need to start these lifesaving conversations with their children.”

Teen alcohol use kills about 4,700 people each year. That’s more than all illegal drugs combined.[1] Research shows that about a quarter of eighth graders have tried alcohol,[2] and more than 40 percent of all tenth graders drink alcohol.[3] It also indicates that children who start drinking young are seven times more likely to be in an alcohol-related crash.[4] Adolescent drinkers perform worse in school, are more likely to fall behind and have an increased risk of social problems, depression, suicidal thoughts and violence.[5]

MADD developed its Power of Parents program to help parents feel confident about talking with their children about the dangers of underage drinking and to never ride with a drinking driver. Parents can download Power of Parents handbooks for parents of middle school and high school students, and sign up for a free 15-minute or 30-minute online workshop in English or Spanish at http://www.madd.org/powertalktx. New in 2016, parents can download the Power of Parents Pocket Guide for a quick overview of the Power of Parents handbooks. When parents sign up for an online workshop or download a handbook, they’ll be entered for a chance to win an Amazon Echo, Kindle Fire HD or one of two $50 gift cards.

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[1] Reducing Underage Drinking: A Collective Responsibility.  Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2003.

[2] Johnston, L. D., O’Malley, P. M., Miech, R. A., Bachman, J. G., & Schulenberg, J. E. (2016). Monitoring the Future national survey results on drug use, 1975-2015: Overview, key findings on adolescent drug use. Ann Arbor: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan, 98 pp.

[3] Johnston, L. D., O’Malley, P. M., Miech, R. A., Bachman, J. G., & Schulenberg, J. E. (2016). Monitoring the Future national survey results on drug use, 1975-2015: Overview, key findings on adolescent drug use. Ann Arbor: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan, 98 pp.

[4] Hingson, Ralph, et al.  “Age of Drinking Onset, Driving After Drinking, and Involvement in Alcohol-Related Motor Vehicle Crashes.”  DOT HS 809 188.  Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, January 2001.

[5] American Medical Association (AMA) (2002).  Fact Sheet from an AMA Report on Alcohol’s Adverse Effects on the Brains of Children, Adolescents and College Students.  – See more at: http://www.madd.org/underage-drinking/why21/brains.html#sthash.X9mXKM5v.dpuf

Founded in 1980 by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, support the victims of these violent crimes and prevent underage drinking. MADD changed American culture by introducing the “designated driver” in 1986 and related red ribbon awareness campaign Tie One On For Safety® now in its 30th year. MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® is marking its 10th anniversary and reducing drunk driving fatalities by 25 percent since its launch. MADD supports drunk and drugged driving victims and survivors at no charge, providing a service every four minutes through local victim advocates and the 24-Hour Victim Help Line 1-877-MADD-HELP. Power of Parents® and Power of Youth® programs reduce underage drinking. Learn more by visiting madd.org or calling 1-877-ASK-MADD.

About Nationwide
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the U.S. and is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. The company provides customers a full range of insurance and financial services, including auto insurance, motorcycle, boat, homeowners, pet, life insurance, farm, commercial insurance, annuities, mortgages, mutual funds, pensions, long-term savings plans and specialty health services. For more information, visit www.nationwide.com.

Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and On Your Side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.

Jeff Salzgeber
Sherry Matthews Marketing, for MADD
PR Consultant
(512) 743-2659
jeff@radiantmediagroup.com

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