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Uncategorized Recent Posts STS&G News Goodove in the News Archive 2017

Goodove Interviewed about the risks of renting homes for teenage beach week.

We’ve hit the prom and graduation season, a time for ordering caps and gowns, picking up corsages, and arranging for pictures.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) — We’ve hit the prom and graduation season, a time for ordering caps and gowns, picking up corsages, and arranging for pictures.

Maybe you’re planning a party. Perhaps you’re renting a beach house so teenagers can get together, celebrate, and share memories. If the plan includes the home rental, you might want to rethink it.

The discussion about Beach Week can get tricky. When it comes to the idea of renting a home for it, teenagers may argue: “What could possibly happen? Everyone’s parents are doing this. Didn’t you party at the beach with friends after you graduated from high school?”

“It’s a complicated issue,” one student told us. “They mean well. It doesn’t always go well, but high school graduation is a fun time.”

Keg stands Beer pong. Shots…lots of shots. Those are part of the celebration for a lot of students. Teens admit to drinking anything and everything, as well as having sex.

Attorney Michael Goodove said parents need to realize there are tough laws about renting beach houses for teenagers and their friends and some risks.

“I think people are crazy and somewhat stupid if they don’t pay attention to the legal ramifications of it,” Goodove told 13News Now, adding that if you rent a beach house for teens and there are alcohol and drugs there, you could be arrested and sent to jail.

There can be huge lawsuits that can leave you bankrupt. What if someone leaves the party drunk, or there’s a sexual assault?

“Parents sometimes need to act like parents and less like their kids,” Goodove stated.

In 2009, the Virginia Supreme Court weighed in on the issue, saying if parents are negligent in the duty of supervising someone else’s child, they can be held civilly responsible for damages.

Michele Tryon, a Parent Educator at The Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters, said, “One of the things we know is that when they say they want to party with their friends, usually there’s some alcohol involved.”

Tyron noted that the subject of graduation parties can involve tough conversations for parents.

You might ask your teen to convince you it’s a good idea to go or ask him/her to explain to you how he/she will be safe. Some parents seem to go the opposite direction, considering supplying alcohol for the parties.

“I think it sends a really mixed message. Teens are already conflicted about some of the choices they’re making,” explained Tryon.

When it comes to teens who drink, The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse reports 1.4 million teenagers engage in binge drinking. Six hundred twenty thousand have an alcohol use issue.

Parents who supply alcohol to children could be charged with Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor, which is a $2,500 fine and carries a potential jail sentence of one year. If there are 20 teenagers at a party for which you supplied alcohol, that’s 20 counts/charges.

Last year, Virginia Beach police officers cited 465 teens for having alcohol, including some in Sandbridge.

“As a parent, we have a duty to be a role model for our children, and we have a duty to not only follow the law but not to engage in dangerous or illegal behavior,” Goodove said.

Clearly, some teens today are choosing not to drink. Studies show about 50 percent don’t.

“Be sober and have fun. You don’t have to be drunk to have fun,” one teenager told 13News Now.

Beach Week may be a tradition for a lot of teenagers. Each year, inevitably, the tradition ends badly somewhere. How they choose to celebrate it and graduation, in general, will determine how — or if — they will be able to look back on the celebration.

View Full Article from Channel 13 News

Virginian-Pilot Archive 1998 STS&G News Goodove in the News

Parents feel pressure of teen drinking, too

The school year is winding down, proms and summer vacations are looming, and parents at Norfolk Collegiate School are talking about peer pressure and underage drinking.

Not just pressure on their kids. Pressure on themselves, the parents.

Pressure to be the nice guys and not the cops with their children and their children’s friends when it comes to them experimenting with alcohol. Pressure to want their kids to like them, to think they’re cool. Pressure to not look like a prude in front of other parents.

A mother with 14- and 17-year-old sons complained that she was the only parent she knew who checked to see if other parents were chaperoning parties in their homes. If she raised the question of alcohol use, the other parents often shrugged and said the kids were going to drink anyway. Better that it be under their roofs.

“They looked at me like I was nuts,” she said.

More than 50 parents of students at this private school met in its cafeteria Monday night for a panel discussion on underage drinking. What are the legalities? What can parents do to discourage it?

“I was kind of hoping to get some ideas on how to handle it,” said George M. Kemp of Virginia Beach, who’s struggled over the issue with his 17-year-old son. “Prohibition doesn’t work.”

Maybe not, but don’t give up, panel members told the crowd.

For one thing, giving or even unintentionally allowing your children to use alcohol – such as by retreating upstairs behind a closed bedroom door while the kids party unsupervised downstairs – is against the law, reminded Judge James H. Flippen Jr. of Norfolk’s Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court. It’s called contributing to the delinquency of a minor. And it’s punishable by up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine.

“It’s serious business,” the judge said.

Helping children “get used to” drinking before they, say, head off to college sends a confusing and immoral mixed message, said Michael L. Goodove, a lawyer and president of the local chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

MADD calls for zero tolerance for underaged drinking. Goodove’s brother was killed at college by an underaged drunken driver. Parents, he and the other panel members said, need to repeatedly talk with their children about why drinking is inappropriate as well as illegal for them.

But don’t try horror stories – they won’t work on savvy teens, said Richard H. Jaglowski, a therapist who’s coordinator of the Child and Adolescent Program at Maryview Psychiatric Hospital.

A firm, consistent and honest stand against their drinking – parents can at least control their own homes – and a game plan to deal with slip-ups is what’s needed.

“There’s nothing you can do to stop your child from drinking,” Jaglowski told the parents. “Nine out of 10 kids, by the time they reach 17, have had alcohol. Forty percent have tried marijuana.

“The only way that’s not going to happen is if you Velcro your kid to your hip.”

Mary Gauthier knows this. The mother of four teenagers and a Norfolk Collegiate faculty member, she regrets not taking a harsher stand when she caught her oldest son with a beer in ninth grade. She cared too much about what her children thought of her.

Years later, on one of the son’s visits home, friends came over late. There was drinking that Gauthier didn’t know about until one of the son’s underaged college friends drunkenly called her the “coolest mom” because she didn’t get angry.

“I was really ashamed of myself,” Gauthier said.

The National High School Senior Survey, an annual study by the University of Michigan, showed in 1995 that illegal drug use was rising among American high-schoolers, and alcohol use was remaining fairly stable, although increasing slightly for seniors.

In 1995, almost 81 percent of seniors had tried alcohol, and 55 percent of eighth-graders had. Thirty percent of 12th-graders had had five or more drinks in a row in the two weeks before the survey; 15 percent of eighth-graders had. More than 63 percent of the seniors had been drunk at least once in their lives, and more than a quarter of the eighth-graders had.

Students at Monday’s discussion agreed that alcohol was prevalent – at parties, driving around, at homes after school when parents weren’t home. Start alcohol education when children are 11 and 12, they said. Talk to children, but don’t come down too hard – they’ll rebel, the youngsters said.

Parents were hoping for more answers. “We know our kids are going to drink,” said Stephen B. Ballard Sr. of Norfolk. “I did it. I imagine nine out of 10 here did it.”

“It’s a tough issue,” the father of two said later. “I don’t know what I’m going to do.”

One of his friends serves alcohol to teens, Ballard said. Going the other way, parent Kemp and his wife stopped drinking at home, believing that setting responsible examples was the key.

Roz Klein’s oldest child is 14, so it’s still easy for Mom and Dad to lay down a black-and-white line concerning alcohol. But it won’t always be, Klein acknowledged.

“I agree with one of the parents who said your kids aren’t going to like you no matter what, so you might as well do what’s right.”

Percent of students who …
Have tried alcohol:
12th grade – 80.7 percent
10th grade – 70.6 percent
8th grade – 54.6 percent
Have been drunk:
12th grade – 63.2 percent
10th grade – 48.9 percent
8th grade – 25.3 percent
Drink daily:
12th grade – 3.5 percent
10th grade – 1.7 percent
8th grade – 0.7 percent

Source: University of Michigan’s National High School Senior
Survey of about 16,000 students in 144 public and private schools
nationwide, December 1995.

Copyright (c) 1996 The Virginian-Pilot
Record Number: 9605080396