TABC amnesty program covers LGBT youth who fall victim to hate crimes, sexual assault

Posted on 03 Dec 2009 at 2:26pm

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission announced yesterday an amnesty program designed to prevent alcohol poisoning among youth. TABC says it will not charge minors with underage drinking if they seek assistance because of a medical emergency or because they’ve been the victim of a violent crime.

I know what you’re thinking — what if TABC agents cause the medical emergency? All joking aside, though, TABC’s newly appointed liaison to the LGBT community, Carolyn Beck, seems to be taking her job seriously. After TABC sent out the initial press release announcing the amnesty program, Beck sent me a follow-up e-mail encouraging me to post the story right here on Instant Tea. Here’s what Beck said in the e-mail:

“With the high incidence of alcohol abuse among young gay people, this is an important issue for your community. Think about a young gay person who was beat up or sexually assaulted after leaving a bar and was afraid to call 911 to report it because they were only 19 and they’d been drinking.

“TABC has taken the first step by coming forward and saying we’re not going to issue citations for underage drinking when someone requests medical attention or has been victimized. You should take this opportunity to encourage your area police departments to do the same. Gay or straight, no one should be afraid to call 911!”

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