ASSEMBLY STANDING COMMITTEE ON ALCOHOLISM AND DRUG ABUSE
NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING
Prevention is recognized as a critical piece of a three-part service model that includes treatment and recovery and has an overarching goal to decrease the number of individuals suffering from alcohol and drug abuse. In New York State, the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS) has collaborated with other state agencies, counties, service providers, coalitions, and other stakeholders on numerous prevention efforts. The Agency also funds approximately 290 addiction prevention programs, many whose primary focus is the prevention of alcohol and drug abuse. Despite these concerted efforts, underage drinking continues to be a public health problem both in New York State and nationwide. According to the Youth Development Survey (YDS) conducted by OASAS, it is estimated that statewide, over 900,000 underage youth consume alcohol each year and one out of every three 13 year-olds in New York State has tried alcohol. In 2007, underage drinking cost New York State $3.5 billion due to work loss, medical care and other problems associated with the use of alcohol by youth. Further, the New York State Advisory Council on Underage Alcohol Consumption, in its annual report noted that in 2007, underage drinking represented 17 percent of all alcohol purchased in New York State, totaling over $2 billion dollars.
This public hearing will provide an opportunity for the Committee to identify current prevention strategies and their effectiveness in reducing underage alcohol consumption, and learn more about OASAS' plans for future initiatives. This public hearing will also explore the need to enhance prevention services and examine the impact that public policy and other legislative proposals have on access to alcohol and underage drinking.
Persons wishing to present pertinent testimony to the Committee at the above hearing should complete and return the enclosed reply form as soon as possible. It is important that the reply form be fully completed and returned so that persons may be notified in the event of emergency postponement or cancellation.
Oral testimony will be limited to 10 minutes. In preparing the order of witnesses, the Committee will attempt to accommodate individual requests to speak at particular times in view of special circumstances. These requests should be made on the attached reply form or communicated to Committee staff as early as possible. In the absence of a request, witnesses will be scheduled in the order in which reply forms are postmarked.
Ten copies of any prepared testimony should be submitted at the hearing registration desk. The Committee would appreciate advance receipt of prepared statements.
In order to further publicize these hearings, please inform interested parties and organizations of the Committee's interest in hearing testimony from all sources.
In order to meet the needs of those who may have a disability, the Assembly, in accordance with its policy of non-discrimination on the basis of disability, as well as the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), has made its facilities and services available to all individuals with disabilities. For individuals with disabilities, accommodations will be provided, upon reasonable request, to afford such individuals access and admission to Assembly facilities and activities.
Assemblyman Steven Cymbrowitz
Assembly Standing Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse