The Lifeline law was created to save lives

I want to start off by saying that as an educator, state representative and member of our community, I do not condone the consumption of alcohol by minors. We cannot ignore the grim reality that minors do experiment and participate in irresponsible behavior, but when that behavior turns into a life-threatening situation, Indiana has provided the Lifeline Law.While this legislation does not do away with our laws on alcohol use, it does however provide immunity for some alcohol-related offenses. The Lifeline Law provides protection from being charged with the following crimes: public intoxication, minor possession, minor consumption and minor transportation of alcohol to the individuals who reveal themselves to law enforcement while seeking medical assistance for a person suffering from an alcohol-related health emergency.As a further step towards accountability, the law requires that certain good-faith actions must be taken in order for a person to receive immunity. A person can demonstrate they are acting in good faith by:

• Providing their full name and any other relevant information
requested by law enforcement officer

• Remaining on the scene until law enforcement and
emergency medical assistance arrive

• Cooperating with authorities on the scene

The law does not interfere with law enforcement procedures or limit the ability to prosecute for other criminal offenses such as providing alcohol to a minor, operating while intoxicated or possession of a controlled substance.

Students from the University of Southern Indiana (USI), partnering with student governments from Indiana University, Purdue University and many others, led the charge on the Lifeline Law because they believed it could save lives. The group sought to raise awareness and show the relationship between how the law, at that time, handled those who reported alcohol poisoning which led to fewer incidents reported and unfortunately fatalities.

As a result, the General Assembly worked alongside these driven college students to pass the Lifeline Law as a life-saving initiative. I encourage you to learn about this law and please help spread the word about it. Although I do not condone irresponsible behavior involving underage consumption, we cannot afford to let bad situations turn deadly.

If you have questions regarding the Lifeline Law, contact me at for additional information about the law, visit and search the 2012 session archives for Senate Enrolled Act 274. You can also visit