We investigated what local enforcement agencies are doing to target adults who provide alcohol to underage youth; what types of enforcement activities are being conducted to target adult providers; and factors that encourage enforcement activities that target adult providers. We surveyed 1,056 local law enforcement agencies in the US and measured whether or not the agency conducted enforcement activities that target adults who provide alcohol to underage youth. We also measured whether certain agency and jurisdiction characteristics were associated with enforcement activities that target adults who provide alcohol to underage youth. Less than half (42 %) of local enforcement agencies conducted enforcement efforts targeting adults who provide alcohol to underage youth. Agencies that conducted the enforcement activities targeting adult providers were significantly more likely to have a full time officer specific to alcohol enforcement, a division specific to alcohol enforcement, a social host law, and to perceive underage drinking was very common. Results suggest that targeting social providers (i.e., adults over 21 years of age) will require greater law enforcement resources, implementation of underage drinking laws (e.g., social host policies), and changing perceptions among law enforcement regarding underage drinking. Future studies are needed to identify the most effective enforcement efforts and to examine how enforcement efforts are prospectively linked to alcohol consumption.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by a Grant from the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (R01 AA017873; Darin J. Erickson, Principal Investigator). We thank Mark Miazga for coordinating survey data collection and William Baker for data management. We also thank Leo Sokoloski, Chief of Police in Bloomsburg Pennsylvania, and Scott Friedlein, Sergeant with the Champaign Illinois Police Department, for assistance with design of the local law enforcement survey. In addition we thank our project consultant, James Mosher, for assistance with survey conceptualization and design. Finally we thank all surveyors and all law enforcement personnel who participated in our surveys.
© 2014, Springer Science+Business Media New York.
- Adult provider
- Underage youth