Drink or drunk: Why do staff at licensed premises continue to serve patrons to intoxication despite current laws and interventions?

Monograph no. 38

Costello D, Robertson AJ, Ashe M

Addressing drinking behaviours, intoxication and the resultant behaviours from intoxication in Australia is influenced by several issues?the social acceptability of intoxication, the acceptance of licensed venues as places where intoxication happens and a general belief that violence and aggression at licensed venues is inevitable. Over the past 20 years, Australia has made significant moves to address issues of alcohol-related harm and violence through server regulations such as RSA training, State and Territory liquor controls, security legislation and through localised liquor management plans and accords. Despite such interventions and media attention around the risks associated with unsafe drinking habits, intoxicated people continue to be able to easily access alcohol and be served in licensed venues. The aim of the current study was to gain an understanding of why staff at licensed premises continue to serve patrons to intoxication and the factors that increase this, despite current laws and interventions. Motivating factors for continuing alcohol service and the different perspectives of both bar staff and venue owners and managers are investigated in this project.