Starbucks in Long Beach has long been a safe haven for teens to hang out . Parents in our community can relax and not worry when their kids go there. That's why we oppose the Long Beach Starbucks' application for a license to sell wine and beer.

At Long Beach Aware, we are not neo-prohibitionists. Rather, our mission is to work with community leaders and help create and keep Long Beach a safe, healthy place for children and families. With nine establishments serving liquor directly across the street from Starbucks, responsible adults can have that beer or glass of wine, enjoy themselves and support local merchants. Why would we allow a multinational company to remove a safe place from our local teens?

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It is well researched and documented that the more places in a community where alcohol is sold, the more youth drink.

Judi Vining, Long Beach

Editor's note: The writer is executive director of Long Beach Aware, a nonprofit group that works to prevent underage drinking.