Jean Elle

Group Aims for Alcohol-Free Zone in San Rafael to Protect Kids

Protesters lined up outside the Circle K store in San Rafael late Friday as part of an effort to prevent the sales of alco-pops in the area.

The popular drinks  are fruity and contain high levels of alcohol.

"They are extremely youth-oriented and youth are attracted to these beverages as their first drink," said Mike Scippa with Youth For Justice.

Scippa said alcohol justice made noise at the state capitol, but efforts to introduce a statewide ban failed.

"We tried legislation and regulation," Scippa said. "Neither worked because of power of lobbying so this is a volunteer program."

Protest organizers said five stores in San Rafael's Canal District agreed to take the colorful cans off the shelves.

"We've been making progress," Scippa said.

Adriana Ramirez said an alco-pop free zone will make it harder for kids to get in trouble.

"I've seen kids drink these and get drunk," the 15-year-old Ramirez said. "I don't like seeing kids like that on the streets."

The clerk at Circle K listened to protesters and referred them to corporate headquarters.

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