To help reduce the risk of youth substance abuse, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed a resolution last June declaring September 24, 2001 as "National Eat Dinner With Your Children Day."
Sponsored by The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University, the initiative grew out of CASA's annual survey of teens, parents, teachers and principals that found the more regularly children and their parents ate dinner together, the less children were at risk to smoke, drink or use drugs.
CASA President and former U.S. Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare Joseph A. Califano Jr., says CASA designated the day to recognize and symbolize the importance of daily parental involvement in children's lives. "Eating dinner together regularly as a family is an expression of parental caring and influence in their children's lives. It is around the dinner table that parents can talk to their kids and share experiences and va lues with them."
Sen. Joseph Biden (D-Del.), a sponsor of the resolution, adds that "family dinners are an import- ant way for parents to remain connected with the challenges that children face and help them learn how to cope with problems, without resorting to smoking, drinking or using drugs."
Letters to the Editor
- Send us a letter