Last year, two Westford establishments faced sanctions for providing alcohol to minors. Westford businesses, and businesses across the Commonwealth, could face the same fate this spring thanks to a new initiative designed at preventing kids from drinking during graduation season.
This week, the Massachusetts Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission or ABCC announced the kickoff of “Operation Safe Spring,” an initiative that will be ratcheting up monitoring of underage drinking at bars, stores and restaurants across the state.
In 2014, the program combined with Alcohol Awareness Month discovered 721 minors in possession or transporting alcoholic beverages, 176 adults procuring alcohol for minors and 29 fake IDs across the state.
According to the ABCC, the overall cost of alcohol abuse by youth is estimated at $1.4 billion, with 47 percent of homicides and 23 percent of suicides by people under 21 involving some form of alcohol intoxication.
“We want to draw attention to the dangers of alcohol abuse and underage drinking,” said Kim Gainsboro, chairperson of the ABCC. “We are making people aware that underage drinking can have devastating consequences on them and the individuals they love.”