NYRA is gearing up for one of the most involved, and committed campaigns of its short life, a campaign to lower the drinking age in Vermont. NYRA Vermont, one of NYRA’s newest and most active chapters, is heavily involved with a growing movement to lower Vermont’s drinking age to eighteen. A bill to lower the drinking age has been sponsored by Vermont Rep. Richard Marron, and has a considerable amount of bipartisan support. Supporters of H-139 cite the many eighteen year olds in the Armed Services and the rise in binge drinking that has resulted from the minimum legal drinking age as reasons to support lowering it. While many law makers think lowering the drinking age is a good idea, some are reluctant to support the bill for fear of losing federal highway funds.
Since Vermont Governor James Douglas is in favor of lowering the drinking age, this bill represents the best chance at a lower drinking age that we have seen in quite a while. Even if it does not pass, the bill will create a national dialogue and force people to reassess their attitudes about young people. NYRA-Vermont plans to visit every college in the state, to distribute literature, recruit members, and rally support for H-139. Many youth rights activists from out of state will be visiting Vermont, and NYRA President Alex Koroknay-Palicz is already scheduled to speak at two area high schools. From March 28th till April 10th, over half a dozen NYRA members will be in Vermont working on this full time. NYRA feels that their efforts could be enough to push the bill through. More activists are needed to travel to Vermont to make this happen. If you are available sometime between March 28th and April 10th, or would like to donate money to support the campaign, please contact the Vermont chapter: