Monday, 23 August 2010

‘No ID, No Sale’ policy to stop children buying alcohol and tobacco.

Today I called on local retailers to support the ‘No ID, No Sale!’ campaign which seeks to ensure that only adults can buy alcohol, tobacco and other age-restricted goods.

I visited Dave’s Off Licence on Chantry Walk, Bryn Road, Ashton in Makerfield, where I was joined by proprietor Dave O’Neill, Wigan Council Licensing Enforcement Officer John Brabbin and CitizenCard’s Marketing Manager Nigel Catlow.

The decision by the government to abolish National ID cards make schemes such as CitizenCard an essential weapon in the fight against under-age alcohol and tobacco sales.

I’m urging all young adults in Makerfield to obtain a CitizenCard or similar ID that contains the police-endorsed PASS hologram. Only then can retailers fully implement the ‘No ID, No Sale!’ policy which allows adults to buy whatever they wish whilst ensuring that children cannot buy alcohol, tobacco and other restricted goods.

Dave O’Neill told me that his staff faced dozens of attempts every week to buy alcohol and tobacco. He has no wish to supply alcohol or cigarettes to children and he promotes to younger customers the CitizenCard which means they can prove their age. If the young person cannot present valid ID his staff always refuse the sale.

More than two million CitizenCards have been issued across the UK since the scheme was launched by then Home Office Minister George Howarth in February 1999. I am pleased that the new government has continued the previous government’s policy of supporting the police’s endorsement of CitizenCards and other cards bearing the PASS hologram.

Application forms for a CitizensCard are available at thousands of retailers across the country and can be downloaded here.