Adloyada: The dark side of the drinking mitzvah

Underage drinking rises in Israel by 350% on Purim, according to date published by Beterem Organization for Child Safety.

The 'Adloyada' parade in the city of Holon. (photo credit: SHARON HENNESSY)
The 'Adloyada' parade in the city of Holon.
(photo credit: SHARON HENNESSY)
Purim, despite its flamboyant and and joyful character, brings with it an unexpected obstacle: underage drinking.
During Purim, there is a 350% increase in the number of child and adolescent alcohol abuse cases in Israel, according to data published by the Beterem Organization for Child Safety.
"Despite the mitzvah of rejoicing 'adloyada' [until you cannot tell right from wrong], it is important for parents to understand that drinking alcohol may endanger their children's lives," said Director of Beterem Orly Silvinger. "Drinking alcohol in children and teenagers may lead to dehydration, a sharp drop in blood pressure, loss of consciousness, poisoning and may even reach the point of threatening one's life."
On Thursday during the Purim celebrations, one 10-year-old was evacuated to Maayanei Hayeshua Hospital from Bnei Barak after consuming excessive amounts of alcohol and was later diagnosed with alcohol poisoning.
On Wednesday night, police caught nine businesses selling alcohol to minors in Jerusalem alone.
The police was reinforced in Israel in preparation for the holiday in regard to the selling and supplying of alcohol to minors. During a covert overnight operation in southern Jerusalem, police uncovered evidence of the nine stores that sold alcohol to minors, despite the explicit prohibition of doing so.
Police announced on Thursday that they would be leveling charges against the stores for selling alcohol to underage children and teenagers, as well as calling the owners in for further proceedings as well as a hearing with a police officer.