Tilly’s, a nationwide retailer with a store in Novato that sells surf-and-skate clothing brands to teens and youth, recently had inappropriate store and window displays depicting underage drinking and glorifying youth binge drinking. On Wednesday, the Novato Blue Ribbon Coalition for Youth, Novato Friday Night Live and the San Rafael Community Coalition came together to protest and educate the community on the effects of underage drinking on the community, families and schools.
In a wonderful turn of events, based on the work of the youth, coalitions and community members, Tilly’s removed the offensive window displays. And, they are being removed nationwide!
Before their removal, the windows featured mannequins in beachwear amid a beach party scene with strewn plastic beer cups and tipped coolers with campaign taglines “Now is the time to get tanked,” and “Now is the time to Par-tee.”
This type of shocking and gratuitous visual imagery and messaging is clearly making a link to binge drinking. This type of messaging, especially from a store that so clearly caters to very young teens and kids, is appalling and inconsistent with the values of our community.
Every day, the Novato Blue Ribbon Coalition for Youth and its members are fighting to address factors that facilitate access and increase the appeal of binge drinking. Our work is difficult enough without a popular clothing retailer using imagery of binge drinking as a quirky way to try and sell T-shirts and tank tops.
We applaud Tilly’s for the removal of the store fronts, and being responsible business partners in the community.
Did you know that in Novato ...
- Youth tell us they drink because that’s what the adult in their lives do.
- 42 percent of 11th graders report binge drinking* in the past 30 days (that’s almost TWICE the state average of 24 percent)
- Youth most often get alcohol from adults, other teens or steal it from home or retail establishments
- 39 percent of adults report binge drinking* in the past 30 days.
It is ALL of our responsibility to protect our youth and keep alcohol out of the hands of youth.
* Note: Binge drinking is considered 4+ drinks in a two-hour period for females,
or 5+ drinks in the same span for males.
For more information, contact Nikki Buckstead at firstname.lastname@example.org or www.NovatoBlueRibbon.org.
(Editor's note: Check this story from the Marin Independent Journal for more coverage of this issue.)