Oklahoma's Social Host Law Subject Of Town Hall Meeting In Tulsa

Thursday, May 31st 2012, 9:31 am
By: News On 6

On November, 1, 2011, Oklahoma's Social Host Law or Cody's Law went into effect making it crime to host a party where minors have access to alcohol or drugs.

The state's ABLE Commission says since then, while there have been arrests made, many parents still claim they didn't know they were breaking the law.

3/8/2011 Related Story: Oklahoma House Approves 'Cody's Law'

I spoke with ABLE Commission special agent Erik Smoot, he told me that despite their best efforts to get the word out about the Social Host Law, which somehow it's not getting through.

The most recent underage drinking stats came out before the state law was passed, but they're still eye-opening. According to the Underage Drinking Enforcement Training Center, 22 traffic fatalities and almost 30 homicides in 2009 were a direct result of underage drinking.

Besides the human toll, the same study show that in 2010, underage drinking cost Oklahoma about $800 million - that includes medical costs, traffic crashes, youth violence and several other factors.

ABLE special agent Eric Smoot adds that when it comes to making the arrests, this new state law does make it easier on law enforcement.

Read Oklahoma's Social Host Law or Cody's Law.

"When law enforcement would show up, we show up to these parties, it tough for us sometimes to figure out who actually gave them the alcohol or the kids don't want to say because it's a source they get. And it's not about that any more, it's now about providing a place where they're able to use it," said Special Agent Eric Smoot.

There is a Town Hall meeting Thursday at Tulsa Tech Lemley Campus, near East 37th and South Memorial to answer questions about Cody's Law.

Special Agent Smoot, as well as the Undersheriff of Tulsa County, and representatives from the Tulsa County D.A.'s office and TPD will be there.

Anyone is welcome to ask questions about underage drinking or the Social Host Law. The meeting starts at 7 p.m.