One hundred fifty-four new bills officially became law in the state of Mississippi at the beginning of July. Many of those new laws will play a significant role in keeping you and your loved ones safe.
If you're an adult and you're caught allowing underage drinking on your property, you're going to get held responsible. That's the result of the social host law. It went into effect July 1st.
Caroline Newkirk, the Underage Drinking Prevention Coordinator with DREAM, Inc. says, "It's very exciting, it's really exciting."
For the past three years, Newkirk has pushed for the social host bill to become law. Under the new legislation, adults can get fined up to $1,000 and/or spend up to ninety days in jail.
Parent Doug Boone is the chairman of an organization called "Community of Concern." Boone understands the importance of the social host law.
"We feel like this law helps parents across the metro Jackson area and the state have one more thing to say no about," says Boone.
The social host bill is not the only form of new legislation that officially became law this July. Lawmakers say several other victories were won as well.
In addition to helping pass the social host law, State Senator David Blount also helped pass an emergency assistance bill. Under Senate Bill 2426, it's now illegal to stop a victim from seeking emergency medical or law enforcement help.
Senator Blount says, "Just the act of denying someone the right to call 911 or the police department or the sheriff's department, that in and of itself is now a misdemeanor."
Senator Blount also played a big role in passing the "Blue Alert Law." The legislation requires the Department of Public Safety to inform every law enforcement agency across the state when a criminal injures or kills an officer in Mississippi.
Blount says, "If someone is protecting us who works in law enforcement and they've been seriously injured or killed, it's critically important that whoever is responsible for that be caught and held responsible."
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