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Drinkers Advised To ‘Get Into It, Not Out Of It’

24 November 2005

Drinkers Advised To ‘Get Into It, Not Out Of It’

Today marks the launch of a South Island wide campaign that aims to support bars becoming safer and more social places to drink and less tolerant of drunks.

The ‘Get into it, not out of it’ message will be seen and heard in and around popular bars throughout the South Island over the Christmas and New Year period. The important message to bar customers is if they have had too much to drink, by law they wont be served or allowed to stay.

Alcohol related harm in New Zealand generates considerable social and economic cost. The Sale of Liquor Act aims to reduce the harm and costs by legally obliging licensed premises to serve alcohol responsibly. The Law prohibits intoxication on licensed premises. All licensed bars, restaurants, clubs, function and event centres risk large fines or possible loss of licence for intoxication offences.

In conjunction with the campaign, more late night monitoring of bars is planned. Barry McDonald, Health Promoter and Liquor Licensing Officer for the CDHB said that most licensed premises operate responsibly and achieve a balance between good business and responsible service.

“However, there are still bars that break the law. Bars that turn a blind eye to intoxication send a false message to the public that there are no rules. The public deserves a consistently safe standard of service and a consistent message”’

Steve Holmes from Holy Grail Sports Bar said intoxicated customers were ‘bad for business.’ “‘Customers are very discerning. We know they want to be entertained and looked after with no dramas to spoil the experience”

The ‘get into it, not out of it’ campaign also aims to empower the public by informing them of the minimum legal standards they should expect when visiting licensed premises. As well as not having to put up with drunks, a good range of food and non-alcoholic drinks must be conveniently available whenever alcohol is served, and assistance with safe transport options must be available from bar staff.

Barry McDonald said “People socialising in bars and clubs are entitled to a happy and safe environment – that means no drunks. ‘Get into it, not out of it’is all about drinkers enjoying themselves, behaving themselves, and being looked after by their licensed responsible host.”

The campaign is organised by the Alcohol & Drug South Island Network (ADSIN) comprising Public Health Units in the South Island in partnership with ALAC, ACC, NZ Police and South Island District Licensing Agencies.

ENDS

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