Major Underage Drinking Problems

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But either way you look at it's just bad because neither are even old enough to touch alcohol. New data shows that 29% of the nation's teens ages 12 to 20 have used alcohol illegally. Winnebago County is above average but this isn't a figure we want. Our county has a larger number of underage drinkers than many other counties in the State of Illinois.

Several agencies combined to help curb underage drinking Tuesday night. The Winnebago County Health Department is going to be working with the Rockford School District. District 205 has grant money to use to help stop binge drinking among our youth. The average age kids start drinking is13 and most don't just have a sip kids pound drinks to get drunk.

Larry Didier with the Winnebago County Health Department says, “We recently discovered that some of the brain formation doesn't take place till late teens early 20's. It's the decision making part of the bran that develops late. This alcohol use has a real impact on that."

There will be a total of 100 alcohol town hall meetings in our state. The next closest one to attend will be held in Freeport. That meeting is next Tuesday April 4th. The Freeport Public Library is the spot and the time is from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. There will be a panel discussion and lots of statistics revealed about how many youth in Freeport are drinking. Research shows students in 6th grade are hitting the bottle.