Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Questions (276)

Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

279 Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if he will consider introducing a requirement for a national responsible trading certificate following a dedicated training programme for all alcohol retailers and their staff before an alcohol licence or an off-licence permit can be renewed; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [35925/12]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Justice and Equality)

The position is that while a certain amount of server training is provided in both the on-trade and the off-trade sectors, there are no statutory training standards or training requirements for staff involved in the sale of alcohol at present.

The Steering Group Report on a National Substance Misuse Strategy, which was published earlier this year, contains many recommendations and policy options in relation to regulating and controlling the supply of alcohol including a recommendation that the Department of Health establish standards for server training programmes in the on-trade and off-trade sectors. I understand that this recommendation will be considered as part of the development of an Action Plan for Alcohol by the Department of Health and proposals on alcohol-related issues will go to Government shortly.

The Report also recommends that the participation by licensees and staff in such programmes should be a condition of the licensing process. I will consider this recommendation in the context of the forthcoming Sale of Alcohol Bill.