Trainings to prevent underage drinking offered in Lincoln County

Wed, 05/16/2018 - 8:30am

Healthy Lincoln County and the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office are working together to provide local restaurants, bars, and stores with three Responsible Beverage Server trainings this May and June.

Trainings will be offered Tuesday, May 22 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Lincoln County Planning Commission in Wiscasset; Thursday, May 24 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Tugboat Inn & Restaurant in Boothbay Harbor; and Tuesday, June 12 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Central Lincoln County YMCA in Damariscotta. Advanced registration through Healthy Lincoln County is required by calling 563-1330. The training costs $15 per person and is valid for three years. Participants must present a state-issued photo ID at the time of training.

“While it may be illegal for youth to drink alcohol, 60 percent of Lincoln County high school students report that they feel it would be easy to get alcohol if they wanted some, according to the 2017 Maine Youth Health Survey,” says Kate Marone, director of Healthy Lincoln County. Youth may sometimes access alcohol through friends or family, or they may access it through restaurants and convenience stores. To help address the retail sources, the trainings, taught by Chief Deputy Rand Maker and Sgt. Mark Bridgham, engage alcohol sellers and servers in learning about effects of alcohol on patrons, ways to prevent the sale of alcohol to minors, Maine liquor laws and more. Currently, there are 146 active liquor license holders in Lincoln County.

With the busy summer season beginning, business owners can utilize this training to equip their staff with knowledge and skills to spot minors’ fake identification and reduce youth access to alcohol. The training emphasizes the important role stores, bars, and restaurants play in preventing underage drinking. Additionally, by completing the training, businesses may be eligible for insurance rate reductions. Offering this training is part of the effort of the Lincoln County Substance Use Prevention Partnership, a coalition of local community members, partners, and youth working to prevent and reduce youth alcohol and drug use.