Monday, May 11, 2009

Data support keeping drinking age at 21

To inform the debate on the impact of the minimum legal drinking age law (MLDA), the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) compiled an overview of research and findings indicated that the MLDA law had positive effects on health and safety. It states:

Solving the problem of underage drinking will require a broad-based, long-term commitment. As we move forward, we need to pay attention to what history and research have taught us and build on this knowledge base including what we know about the relationship between minimum legal drinking age laws and underage drinking and is consequences.

Recently, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation compiled a brief that offers additional information about the positive effects of the law. It states:

There is no evidence that lowering the MLDA will reduce the underage drinking problem. Conversely, there is strong evidence that lowering the drinking age will increase youthful alcohol consumption and alcohol-related injuries and fatalities.

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