New Wakefield partnership to tackle underage drinking

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A new partnership has been cracking down on underage drinking in Wakefield over the festive period.

Spectrum CIC, Wakefield Council, Wakefield BID and West Yorkshire Police have launched the Recognition of Alcohol Responsibility Scheme (RoAR) to accredit local businesses which can demonstrate good practice in preventing the sale of alcohol to under-18s. This includes keeping an accurate sales refusal register and prioritising staff training.

To receive RoAR accreditation, each business must demonstrate a commitment to public safety, preventing crime and disorder, protecting children from harm, preventing public nuisance, and improving public health and the community.

Earlier this month, the partners presented the first RoAR Certificate to W.I.S Eastern European Food, on Kirkgate.

Andy Simms, community development alcohol practitioner for Spectrum, said, “Over the festive season, teenagers can see other people drinking and might feel tempted to ‘join in’. But under-age drinking causes lasting harm to young people and can have a serious impact on their development, education and future opportunities. The RoAR scheme is our way to recognise businesses which help to keep young people in Wakefield safe and protect them from the harm caused by alcohol.”

It is an offence to sell alcohol to a person under the age of 18 and retailers found guilty can face fines of up to £20,000. As part of the RoAR scheme, businesses are also encouraged to beware of “proxy sales”, where adults buy alcohol for young people. To find out more, email PR@spectrum-cic.nhs.uk.