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‘Tis the season . . . plan 2 party

‘Tis the season . . . plan 2 party

Hawke’s Bay District Health Board’s public health unit has put together funky ‘plan 2 party’ cards which are designed to give young people information they need to stay safe over the holiday season.

Health promoter, Shari Tidswell, says the cards will be distributed to all the places young people hang out – retail outlets like surf shops, bars and clubs. The cards give information web sites, strategies for safe partying, as well as useful phone numbers people can phone for further advice.

“School’s over for senior students and with tertiary students back home party season is here.

“When young people are partying and under the influence of alcohol they often make choices which can put them at risk. People are more likely to have unplanned sex and under the influence of alcohol, people are less likely to use condoms.

“The flow on effect is an increased risk of catching a sexually transmitted infection and for women, unplanned pregnancy.

“Alcohol has the effect of making young people feel over-confident, and this is when they are likely to try other drugs, take a risk by walking home drunk, get into fights, commit crimes, and get into cars with drunk drivers.

“Young people need to look out for their mates. If you’re planning a big night out, get sorted before you hit the town – discuss how you’re going to get home, or whose place you can stay at for the night,” Shari Tidswell said. “These things need to be discussed early on so that parents and teens are clear about expectations and both understand what is needed to stay safe. “

There are some simple messages for parents around teens going to parties: Know where the party is, who to contact, and times (start and finish) Contact the host, ask about supervision, arrangements around alcohol, transport and other details. Discuss with your teen limits around drinking, how they can get home safely, what to do in emergencies, what to do if things at the party get out of hand and other things to keep them safe. Know where the party is, who to contact, and times (start and finish) Contact the host, ask about supervision, arrangements around alcohol, transport and other details. Offer to pick them up if needed or to pay for a taxi.

Napier Safer Community Council have put together a comprehensive ‘Parent Pack’ containing useful information for parents to help navigate the teenage years. The leaflet provides detailed information on everything from exclusions and stand-downs from school through to facts about drugs, coping when things go wrong, parties and contact numbers of agencies set up to provide advice and help to teens and their parents. For a copy, contact Robyn Smith at the Napier Safer Community Council phone 833 7910.

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