Buying alcohol to give to under 18's is known as Proxy Purchasing and is illegal. Anyone caught supplying alcohol to young people is at risk of an £80 fixed penalty notice, with a maximum penalty of a £5000 fine. Throughout Spring 2017, services across St Helens are working to crack down on young people's access to alcohol by targeting adults and licenced premises to ensure they are aware of the risks. Young People's alcohol use is linked to a number of adverse outcomes, such as crime and anti-social behaviour, hospital admissions, accidents and injuries and risk taking behaviour.
YPDAAT know that some parents think that buying alcohol for their children will help set a limit to what they are drinking, but young people tell us that they often share their alcohol with their mates. Guidance from the Chief Medical Officer states that an alcohol free childhood is the best option, and that young people under the age of 17 should be supervised by parents when drinking. The Alcohol Education Trust has loads of useful advice on talking to young people about their alcohol use.
Ecstasy has been in the news over the past few weeks, with a number of young people across the North West becoming unwell after using it, and sadly a number of deaths linked to Ecstasy use.
In St Helens, a number of young people have reported feeling unwell after taking Ecstasy. Pills that have been mentioned have been 'Lego Bricks' and 'Blue Warner Brothers'.
Some of the feelings people have told us about include feeling agiated, nauseous, shakey, confused, feeling unwell for a long period of time after use, and collapsing when using.
We would advise people to avoid using all types of Ecstasy pill, or powder (known as Magic), because you can never tell exactly what pills or powders contain, there could be other substances mixed in, or they may not be Ecstasy at all.
Pills can come in all shapes, sizes and colours and 2 pills that look the same may be different and give very different effects.
Read more about Ecstasy
St Helens Young People's Drug and Alcohol Team (YPDAAT), provide young people and their families in St Helens with a range of interventions to enable them to make informed choices around drug and alcohol use in order to achieve their full potential.
Despite what you might think, most young people chose not to use drugs or alcohol. Of those that do most young people will grow out of this without any issues.