Students discuss push to reduce underage drinking

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Governor Pat McCrory said they have seen some reduction in underage drinking since they began a campaign a year ago to reduce underage drinking but there’s more to be done.

“Talk it Out NC” is a series of commercials showing the serious consequences of underage drinking. The campaign is meant to encourage parents to address their kids’ interest in drinking.

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Student Tim Quinn said  teens are just curious about drinking but parents can make a difference when it comes to their children drinking.

“People I think if they’re more open about it and talk about it with their parents that they can get that curiosity out of the way that eventually leads to kids binge drinking,” said Quinn.

Student Chris Collins  said for many college students drinking is a part of the experience.

“Everybody I knew was under 21 and it was still pretty easy to get alcohol,” said Collins. “We’re already so deep into what we’ve been doing, it’s so common like I was saying.”

Student McKenzie LeFlore said while drinking is common place in college, it’s also common in high school.

“I definitely think most of the people I have come in contact with were not first exposed to alcohol when they came to college, you know I think it definitely started in high school,” said McKenzie Leflore.

According to the 2013 New Hanover County State of the County Report, 28% of students surveyed between the grades 6 through 12 said they’ve used alcohol recently, despite 74% of them admitting they understand that drinking is dangerous.

McCrory says he hopes to work with North Carolina universities to research some of alcohol’s negative effects on the adolescent brain.