With the holidays right around the corner, parties and celebrations are no doubt soon to follow. But one thing that shouldn't is underage drinking.
That's why it's so important for an initiative like "Sticker Shock" before the holidays, West Deptford Police Chief Craig Mangano said.
Sticker Shock will take place at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 20 at Joe Canal’s Liquor located off of Parkville-Station Road. The event is spearheaded by the Southwest Council, which works to combat substance abuse in South Jersey.
About a half-dozen students from West Deptford High School will meet with Mangano, a D.A.R.E. officer and a representative of the Southwest Council at the liquor store. Under supervision, the students apply stickers to cases of beer and tags to liquor bottles and wine. The stickers discourage adults from giving alcohol to minors.
“We’re thinking this is a good time of the year for this, with the holidays coming up,” Mangano explained.
The cooperation of Joe Canal’s owner Scott West was “the most integral part” of the initiative, according to Mangano. Joe Canal’s is also part of the “Cops and Shops” program, which places undercover officers in liquor stores to prevent potential underage drinking.
“He’s always been very proactive with the police department,” said Mangano.
The students' participate voluntarily, and all are members of the high school's Students Against Destructive Decisions (S.A.D.D.), a peer leadership club that combats negative peer pressure—such as that which leads to underage drinking.
“They were really motivated, and very excited to get the message out there,” said Student Assistance Counselor April Sanford.
The event will last anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. All students will receive T-shirts from the Southwest Council for their participation.
“Sticker Shock” was initially conceived by the Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office Community Partnership. Although this is the first year West Deptford will participate in “Sticker Shock,” surrounding towns have participated in the past.