From the olgr

Brian Bauer
Acting Executive Director, OLGR

p: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)

Handy tips when hiring new staff

While hospitality is an industry in demand year-round, the start of a new year often sees an increase in job seekers. Whether these job seekers are school-leavers, are currently studying or are coming to the industry for the first time, here are some tips to consider when employing new staff:  

RSA certificates

If your new staff member needs to obtain an RSA ‘Statement of Attainment’ for the first time, they can contact their nearest Registered Training Organisation to become certified in 'Provide Responsible Service of Alcohol'. Once obtained, this certification does not expire.

If they hold an RSA certificate from another Australian state or territory and that qualification is a 'Statement of Attainment' in 'Provide responsible service of alcohol', they can use this qualification in Queensland.

Exempt minors

Is the new staff member over 18? It is generally illegal for under 18s (minors) to be on licensed premises, however, there are some exemptions, including: 

The minor is working on the premises to perform duties as an employee of the owner, or occupier, in the conduct of a lawful business or while receiving training for employment or work experience.

Under the Liquor Act 1992, children under the age of 18 may work in licensed premises, but if the premises has an adult entertainment permit, they must not be present in an approved area while the adult entertainment is being provided.

If your liquor licence does not include an adult entertainment permit, provisions of the Child Employment Regulation 2006 may also affect you. 

For more, search for ‘Exemptions for minors on a licensed premises’ here.

Resources

The OLGR website has a wealth of information for your new staff members to become acquainted with. From tips on refusing service, right through to the ‘Behind the bar’ RSA training videos, staff can learn more about the liquor and gaming industries and the law in Queensland.

Our RSA and RSG online refresher courses and quizzes are also wonderful resources to test the knowledge of both new and existing staff about their responsibilities and obligations under the Liquor Act.

For more information, click here.

Reminder of Easter trading hours

Be sure to familiarise yourself with the guidelines for trading over the Easter holidays.

Compliance officers from the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation (OLGR) will be out and about over this time and they wish to remind you that penalties can apply to licensees who breach the Liquor Act 1992.

Alcohol service and gaming operations must cease at midnight on the eve of Good Friday (April 18). On Good Friday (April 19), you can sell or supply alcohol between 10am to midnight in conjunction with a meal in a part of the premises that is ordinarily set aside for dining, if the meal is also prepared served and intended to be eaten on the premises. 

Patrons can purchase alcohol one hour before their meal, while eating and for one hour after finishing their meal. It is important to note that a ‘meal’ is defined as, food eaten at a fixed structure used as a table, with cutlery provided for the purpose of eating, and is of a sufficient substance to be ordinarily accepted as a meal’.

Selling takeaway alcohol, operating gaming machines or providing adult entertainment are all prohibited on Good Friday.
On Easter Sunday and Monday (April 21-22), you can trade at your usual approved trading hours.

Easter time can also mean increased patronage at some licensed venues. Please remind your staff to be vigilant with checking ID.

Serve safe this Easter long weekend

With the Easter long weekend fast approaching, I’d remind all licensees to be aware of your obligations to provide a safe environment for patrons and staff, both in and around your venue.

1. Crowd control 

With larger crowds, ensure all areas are free from congestion and manage patron numbers and queues. Employ the right ratio of security to patrons – this may be stated on your licence. Deal with any incidents quickly and record them in an incident register.

2. Drinking water

Most licensees are required to make free drinking water available to patrons. Even where not mandatory, it’s good practice.

3. Noise

More patrons create more noise, which may disturb your neighbours. Keep noise levels down by discouraging people from lingering outside your venue. For example, have strategies in place to ensure patrons are transported away from your licensed premises when they leave.

4. Patron behaviour

Monitor your patrons before they become unduly intoxicated. Remember, it is illegal to serve alcohol to, or allow alcohol to be consumed by an underage, unduly intoxicated or disorderly person.

5.  Refusal of service

It is your legal obligation to refuse service if a patron is unduly intoxicated, disorderly, or a minor. You should also consider refusing service if the safety of the patron, or others, is in jeopardy, or if you consider the refusal of service warranted (providing it is not discriminatory). 

Most importantly, ensure your staff are always practising responsible service of alcohol.

Another look ‘Behind the bar’ 

A reminder about the two new videos in the Behind the bar RSA training series that we have just released.

Think ahead and We all play a role were developed following the popularity of the first two instalments (Just one more and Tricky situation). These are training resources for licensees and staff, as well as for registered training organisations.

The videos show common, real-life scenarios and explore why it is important to ensure responsible service of alcohol to all patrons.

As in the previous videos, the two new scenarios are based on the ‘observe, engage, assess, have a plan and provide a solution’ model of refusal of service.

You can view the videos and supporting resources here

Please take the time to check out the videos and start sharing them with your staff.

Venues fined for non-compliance under Liquor Act

In December 2018, two Brisbane venues were fined in the Holland Park Magistrates Court following OLGR investigations.

The court fined the licensee of a Sunnybank café/bar $4,800 for breaches against the Liquor Act 1992 (the Act), following a routine OLGR compliance inspection in August 2018.

While the venue was serving alcohol within their approved trading hours, investigators identified several areas of non-compliance.

There was no approved manager or crowd controllers present at the venue as required by the Act, and the licensee was advertising the sale price of alcohol, as well as promoting discounted liquor on signage outside of the premises, and on social media. 

Following the investigation, compliance officers worked with the licensee to achieve compliance, providing comprehensive advice, education and documentation on the issues they’d found. Despite this, some of the same concerns were identified at follow-up inspections.

The second case heard was against an unlicensed Sunnybank karaoke venue, resulting in the company director being fined $6,000.

Acting on information provided by the public and other agencies, OLGR officers executed a search warrant, where investigators found patrons consuming alcohol. They also located significant quantities of alcohol, which were later confirmed to be for the purpose of selling to patrons. 

Further investigations revealed that between 27 April and 15 July 2018, more than $9,600 worth of alcohol was sold to patrons without the authority of a liquor licence or permit and was falsely recorded in financial records.

If you have any questions or concerns about your liquor licence conditions, responsibilities under the Act, or responsible service of alcohol, please contact OLGR on 13QGOV or click here.

Did you know?

TAB QLD Limited (previously UBET) is the exclusive licence holder for race and sports wagering in Queensland. New wagering licence applications cannot be considered until 30 June 2044.