Putnam County Social Host Laws: Be a Parent NOT A Friend!

Spring and summer are times of celebrations – specifically, proms and graduations. Our Kids DESERVE and NEED to celebrate these milestones, especially after enduring the pandemic!

Our community is so proud of our young people and we want to ensure safe celebrations for all! The Putnam Communities That Care Coalition and local law enforcement want to remind the community about Putnam County’s Social Host Laws. Each municipality has their own social host law. These laws govern the use of, and access to, alcohol in social settings. House parties are the prime targets.

The law prohibits adults from knowingly allowing a party or gathering where 3 or more minors are present and alcoholic beverages are consumed by one or more minors. Whether an adult supplied the alcohol or not doesn't matter -- if you know about the party on your property, you are obligated to do something to stop it. You will be facing a misdemeanor conviction, a $3,000 fine and response recovery costs (the cost of any and all emergency services including the police). In addition, you can be sued civilly for any damage or injury that occurs as a result of the underage drinking. The purpose of the social host law is simple – to protect our young people and our community at large. Underage drinkers are at much greater risk of being involved in a fight, a sexual assault, an accidental injury or an automobile crash. Adults have a duty to insure that the parties you host for your teens are alcohol free.

BE A PARENT NOT A FRIEND. Underage drinking can ruin all those things you want for your child – Health, Happiness, Safety and Success. Sometimes the coolest thing you can do for your teen is to be a Parent.The longer you can delay the use of drugs and alcohol by your child, the better chance you will have that they will not have a problem with it as an adult.

In New York State there is a Good Samaritan Law that will protect those who seek help when they are witnessing or experiencing a substance-related emergency as well as the person who has overdosed. This law protects the caller against criminal charge and prosecution for possession of alcohol and controlled substances, as well as possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

However, these protections do not encompass felony-amounts of possession, drug sales, and other non-drug crimes.


For more information, please visit: http://preventioncouncilputnam.org/coalitions/#pfs or call

(845) 225-4646.


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