THE 2015 “SO, NOW YOU’RE 18” PROGRAM KICKS OFF
On April 23rd, Commonwealth’s Attorney Gerald Arrington kicked off his annual So, Now You’re 18 program. This year, Arrington’s program kicked off at Grundy Senior High School, and included multiple topics ranging from financial responsibility to the legal issues facing adults.
Arrington began working on this program in 2012, the same year that he took office. When asked about creating the program Arrington stated “I am very proud to be the first Commonwealth’s Attorney in Buchanan County to create any type of community awareness program, but more importantly, one geared toward our youth. In particular, I started this program because it is a priority of mine to educate the public on the issues facing them.” Arrington further stated that “turning 18 is a huge milestone in a young adult’s life. To most, this is a time to celebrate adulthood and begin living life as an adult. While I agree turning 18 is something to celebrate, it also carries a huge responsibility. I created this program to educate seniors in high school about the responsibility of turning 18. I want to encourage this group of young adults to be active and responsible members of the community.”
Arrington told us the program focuses on many facets of life as an adult, not just the legal aspects. It encourages the group to become registered voters and become informed about politics so that they can have a say in the political process. It also advises on their financial responsibilities and the importance of understanding how these decisions can affect their lives. The program also enlightens the group on the reality of the legal system and turning 18, to make sure they understand that they are no longer juveniles and what they do today can follow them the rest of their lives.
Arrington further stated that “the program is designed to educate the young adults of the community about these issues, and to address any questions they may have. I created the program because I understand that these are the future leaders of our county, and our country. I want these young adults to learn from this experience.” Arrington concluded that “it is not my goal to scare them or to take the place of their parents or guardians. I am a firm believer that teaching responsibility begins at home, however, I want to help where I can to solidify the lessons that are being taught there.”
The dates I will be speaking are as follows:Council High, May 13th, Hurley High, May 18th, Twin Valley, May 22nd.