Publicans’ seminar to tackle underage drinking and drug use

PUBLICANS from all over Co Waterford are to attend a day-long seminar in Dungarvan tomorrow which aims to provide them with information on dealing with difficult situations, using first aid and increasing their knowledge of the effects of drink and drugs.

The free seminar is being organised by publicans under the ‘Glasses’ programme and will involve a number of presentations on safe practices and the present trends in the licensed trade.

Up to 200 publicans and their staff are expected to attend the seminar, which will start at the Park Hotel, Dungarvan, at 9.30am.

Locally based Superintendent Tom O’Grady said there had always been a good working partnership between the Gardaí and publicans in Dungarvan.

“We wanted to broaden it out to the whole county. There’s such an amount of new legislation that we feel we should make publicans aware of it,” Supt O’Grady said.

The initiative is being fully supported by the Vintners Federation of Ireland (VFI) and the Southeast Regional Drugs Task Force.

Various Garda experts will address a number of issues, including new Liquor Licensing legislation which allows them to test purchase alcohol in pubs and nightclubs using people between the ages of 15-17.

The test purchasing, announced recently by Garda Commissioner Fachtna Murphy, is aimed at cracking down on underage drinking.

Garda liaison officer Sergeant Andrew Geary said that he was extremely heartened by the interest shown by publicans who were paying for the seminar themselves and in many cases bringing several of their staff.

Sergeant Geary said the seminar aims to increase awareness among those serving alcohol of the negative consequences of alcohol and drug misuse and to identify possible solutions to deal with the problems effectively.

Garda experts will talk on drug dealing in bars and customer profiling.

A VFI officer will also address the seminar.

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