For a community to effectively prevent underage drinking, it is essential that licensed alcohol retailers ensure that their sellers and servers are trained in the best methods to prevent underage alcohol sales.
This includes checking identification, recognizing and confiscating fake IDs, and refusing sales to customers who are intoxicated or are purchasing alcohol for minors.
The Kentucky Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, which licenses and regulates the sale of alcohol, actively combats youth access to alcohol through effective programs and policies for licensees.
ABC ensures compliance and understanding of ABC laws through education and enforcement.
Through its Server Training in Alcohol Regulations (S.T.A.R) program, ABC educates sellers and servers of alcohol about their responsibilities and liabilities under Kentucky law.
This makes communities safer by reducing illegal alcohol sales to minors.
Since April 2006, the Lexington Fayette Urban County Government has required that any seller or server of alcohol, whether in a restaurant, bar or catering company, successfully complete a responsible beverage service training program.
Although such training is not yet required statewide, LFUCG has been joined by 46 other cities and counties in passing ordinances to make responsible beverage service training mandatory.
As a result, more than 30,000 sellers and servers have been trained statewide.
Since the implementation of the training program in 2001, retailer compliance with
Kentucky’s ban on sale to minors has increased from 72% to 94%.
Such success is a clear demonstration of how effective training can be when combined with active enforcement.
Nonetheless, it is important that parents not rely solely on the vigilance of retail servers and sellers to prevent youth from obtaining alcohol.
Underage youth frequently obtain alcohol from older friends and relatives (both with and without their knowledge) rather than directly from a retail establishment.
Get to know your children’s friends and the parents of siblings of those friends.
When your child visits a friend’s home, make sure alcohol in the home is secure and inaccessible.
Talk to your children about the importance of staying alcohol-free and establish clear expectations for them.
Support local law enforcement efforts to keep the community’s youth safe from harm by enforcing the 21 minimum drinking age.
For more information regarding S.T.A.R., please contact Sandra Watts at 502-564-4850 or visit ABC’s web site http://abc.ky.gov/education