These unidentified Friday Night Live participants hope to reduce underage drinking in Lassen County. Photo submitted

Local Friday Night Live youth lead the charge to reduce underage drinking

This year, young people in Diamond View Club LiveFriday Night Live will launch a campaign to tackle underage drinking in Lassen County.

Friday Night Live builds partnerships for positive and healthy youth development, engaging youth as active leaders and resources in their communities to create positive changes on important issues that matter to them. Due in large part to changes in legislation and prevention efforts, there has been a 34.5 percent decline in the prevalence of drinking among 12 to 20-year-olds since 2004, yet alcohol remains the most widely used substance amongst youth in the US.

Young people in Diamond View-CL are on a mission to ensure that underage drinking rates continue to decline.

There is a common misconception that all young people are participating in underage drinking. Misleading depictions of youth perpetuate this false narrative in film, television and social media.

Due to the saturation of these images and messages, many young people may feel isolated in their decision not to drink. The behaviors that a group, such as teens, believes to be acceptable are called social norms, and social norms have been proven to influence behavior. Youth in Friday Night Live will launch a multi-media initiative to counter negative stereotypes of youth’s relation to alcohol and promote positive social norms by highlighting the stories of their peers choosing healthy behaviors and remaining alcohol-free.

Lassen County residents should be proud to know underage drinking is decreasing in community, according to statistics from the California Healthy Kids Survey for Lassen County over the years. Students will highlight these positive behaviors by creating posters, digital graphics, and public service announcements to encourage more young people across the county to participate in healthy life decisions. Students will permeate their campuses, neighborhoods, online platforms, and airwaves with their messages wherever young people congregate. Diamond View-CL have also been at numerous community events such as the children’s fair and festival of lights to encourage healthy life decisions.

With support from the California Friday Night Live Partnership and a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, students will utilize environmental prevention strategies through youth-led initiatives to educate their peers, neighbors, and local leaders on ways to reduce underage drinking.

Throughout the year-long campaign, youth in FNL will receive training on data collection, environmental prevention, the health risks of underage drinking, public speaking, how to create public service announcements, and leadership development in a collection of valuable lifelong skills.

The group says, “We want our peers to look up to what we are doing and make good choices.”

Diamond View-CL members will join young people in 45 chapters across California in this collaborative effort to reduce alcohol access for minors and mitigate the damages caused to communities by underage drinking.  Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

For more information about Friday Night Live, visit fridaynightlive.org.

More information is available here, too.
2020 Report to Congress on the Prevention and Reduction of Underage Drinking SAMSHA’s Center for the Application of Prevention Technologies.