Underage Drinking: Success Stories



Drinking: Success Stories



Delaware – August 18, 2003



of Problem










With support from the OJJDP

Enforcing the Underage Drinking Laws Initiative, community organizations, enforcement agencies, youth, and other concerned citizens are working collaboratively to

change local ordinances and enforcement practices.


Environmental Model Key to BRC?s Success in Newark, Delaware

The Building Responsibility Coalition (BRC) has been successfully

reduced underage drinking and other high-risk drinking behavior by

?changing the norms, attitudes, polices, and practices affecting high-risk

drinking on and off the college campus,? states Tracy Bachman, BRC program

director. With the high number of young people living on and around

college campuses, the prevention of underage drinking has become a high

priority for the BRC, which is part of a National effort called ?A Matter

of Degree? funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The BRC uses an environmental model as the basis of its advocacy efforts

in policy, enforcement, and awareness. Many of the BRC?s accomplishments

stem from two main policy objectives: to control the easy accessibility of

alcohol and discounted pricing of drinks in downtown Newark, and to reduce

the secondhand negative effects of disorderly parties and high-risk

drinking on campus and in surrounding neighborhoods.

Together with the University of Delaware, the Mayor?s Alcohol Commission,

the Newark City Council, and the Newark Police Department, the BRC has

actively pursued environmental change to impact underage and other

high-risk drinking in the Newark area.

To assist the City of Newark in directing alcohol policies and programs,

the Mayor?s Alcohol Commission was formed in November 2001. The

commission?s efforts has resulted in the City of Newark adopting State

Alcohol Beverage Commission laws that can be enforced by local police and

used to prosecute violators in local courts. In addition, an alcohol

enforcement unit was created. The Newark City Council also voted to

increase the business license fees of alcohol sellers to help fund the

alcohol officer unit, supporting the BRC principle that costs of

additional enforcement should be paid by those who buy, sell, and use


In 2002, the Newark City Council passed a local ordinance that restricts

happy hours and discounted drink specials. The Newark City Council has

also been successful in adding ?dormitories? to the list of properties

protected in the zoning code from alcohol licensed establishments

operating in adjacent buildings, and placing restrictions on licensees

within 300 feet.

The Newark Police Department (NPD), an integral partner in this venture,

has increased patrols in neighborhoods surrounding the university to

reduce alcohol-related complaints from permanent residents, as well as

compliance checks of local establishments, thanks to OJJDP grants.

BRC efforts in supporting policies that encourage the responsible and

legal use of alcohol are resulting in a healthier environment for

students, residents, and businesses and a reduction in harm to people and

property caused by high-risk drinking.


For more information, contact Tracy Bachman, Program Director,

Building Responsibility Campus/Community Coalition, University of Delaware

at 302-831-3115 or [email protected] or

visit the BRC website at http://www.udel.edu/brc



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