Publication

Publication name: An evaluation of the implementation of, and compliance with, the objectives of the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005
Date: 16 August 2012
Description: An evaluation of the implementation of, and compliance with, the objectives of the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005: Sub-study of Test Purchasing and other measures to enforce underage alcohol sales regulations.

In Scotland it is an offence for a person to sell alcohol to, or to obtain alcohol on behalf of a child or young person aged under 18 years. A number of measures are in place to help prevent illegal underage sales of alcohol, including test purchasing, Challenge 25, proof of age schemes and bottle marking schemes. To explore the barriers and facilitators to the implementation of these measures and to identify lessons for improvement, an eight-month sub-study was undertaken as part of the evaluation of the implementation of, and compliance with, the objectives of the Licensing (Scotland) Act 2005.

Based on interviews with representatives from the police, prosecution service and licensing boards in three case study police force areas, together with structured interviews with a sample of licence holders, the study found that although there were perceived barriers to all of the approaches aimed at enforcing underage alcohol sales regulations, test purchasing was seen as a very useful way to gauge and potentially improve licensed trade staff practice. A majority of licence holders also reported that test purchasing was their preferred enforcement tool, as long as it was used in tandem with a robust proof of age documentation scheme. Although all of the mechanisms were perceived to have resulted in a reduction in direct sales of alcohol to underage young people, the consensus was that these measures used in isolation were not sufficient to reduce alcohol consumption in this age group.
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19199-RE024FinalReportTestPurchasing(Jul12)0910FAM.pdf   [345.62 KB]

English language version

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