23 Dev. Mental Health L. 1 (2004)

handle is hein.journals/dvmnhlt23 and id is 1 raw text is: DEVELOPMENTS IN
MENTAL HEALTH LAW
The Institute of Law, Psychiatry & Public Policy - The University of Virginia

Volume 23, Number 1

January 2004

Reducing Underage Drinking: A Collective Responsibility
By Richard J. Bonnie

[Ed.: The following statement was provided as
part of Professor Bonnie's testimony before
the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Substance
Abuse and Mental Health Services,
Committee on Health, Education, Labor and
Pensions on September 30, 2003.]
Good morning, Mr. Chairman and members of
the Subcommittee.... I served as chair of the
Committee on Developing a Strategy to
Reduce and Prevent Underage Drinking of the
National Research Council and the Institute of
Medicine. The National Research Council is
the operating arm of the National Academy of
Sciences, National Academy of Engineering
and the Institute of Medicine, chartered by
Congress in 1863 to advise the government
on matters of science and technology.
The report of this committee was produced in
response to a Congressional request to
develop a strategy to reduce and prevent
underage drinking. The committee reviewed a
wide variety of government and private
programs for the purpose of developing a
comprehensive national strategy. We relied
on the available scientific literature,

commissioned papers, testimony and
submissions from the public, and the expertise
of committee members in public policy, public
health, youth interventions, and substance
abuse. Our starting point was the current
national policy setting 21 as the minimum
legal-drinking age.
Also in this issue:
Virginia Enacts Civil Commit-
ment of Sexually Violent
Predators Legislation ..... 6
Branding Juveniles as Sex
Offenders ........................ 10
Supreme Court Cases ...... 24
Other Federal Court Cases ..... 32
Virginia State Court Cases ...... 44
Other State Court Cases ......... 46
Other Legal Developments ..... 52
Alcohol use by young people is an endemic
problem that is not likely to improve in the

* Chair of the Committee on Developing a Strategy to Reduce and Prevent Underage Drinking, National
Research Council and Institute of Medicine; John S. Battle Professor of Law and Director, Institute of
Law, Psychiatry and Public Policy, University of Virginia. The full report of the Committee, entitled
Reducing Underage Drinking: A Collective Responsibility, can be found at
http://www.nap.edu/books/0309089352/html/.

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