In an effort to tackle one of the underlying causes for underage drinking, the Area Substance & Alcohol Abuse Prevention coalition has been talking to area students about cyberbullying.
Scott Stemper, director of ASAAP, said youth haven't developed as strong of coping mechanisms as adults and can be lured into substance abuse. Not all children who are bullied turn to alcohol or drugs, but Stemper said the goal is to prevent any students from underage drinking or substance abuse.
"Some kids revert to using drugs or alcohol to fit in or cope with the stresses they deal with," he said. "Some youth said they do start using because of peer pressure, which is a form of bullying."
Bullying rose to the top of the list of student concerns in a survey of eighth-graders, high school sophomores and high school seniors in 2011, Stemper said.