Licensees and Restaurant owners who shirk the laws in both liquor and food safety are now finding themselves listed on public websites.
NSW OLGR has established the 'Three strikes' disciplinary scheme – A data base of licensed premises that have breached their approved licence conditions.
A key principle of the three strikes scheme is that strikes can be imposed when a licensee or approved manager is convicted (including via payment of a penalty notice) of one of a range of the most serious offences under the Liquor Act.
Premises who receive three strikes result in the imposition of licence conditions, licence suspension for up to 12 months, licence cancellation, and/or disqualification of a licensee for any period of time. Three Sydney restaurants received fines for operating outside their authorised trading hours and publicly listed in the Three Strikes register.
Paul Newson, OLGR Director of Compliance advised:
Licensees are required by law to keep a register containing copies of responsible service of alcohol (RSA) certificates of staff involved in the sale or service of alcohol, as well as those of security staff. All licensees need to be vigilant in following their approved licence conditions. "It is illegal for alcohol to be sold, supplied or consumed inside a licensed venue outside of approved trading hours, with court imposed penalties of up to $11,000 and 12 months imprisonment applying."
New South Wales and Victoria have “Name and Shame” data bases, listing food businesses that fail to meet food safety standards. These data bases are being widely used by consumers with the NSW Name & Shame register recording a whopping 7.1 million hits on the site since it began in 2008.
In a bid to use food safety ratings in a more positive way, Public Disclosure of Food Safety ratings are being utilised. This highlights the eateries that are performing exceptionally well and those that are achieving high standards of cleanliness. It requires participating businesses to display a certificate showing a rating indicating their level of food safety compliance.
Brisbane City Council has introduced “Eat Safe Brisbane” Every licensed food business in Brisbane receives a food safety star rating. Businesses that demonstrate high levels of food safety receive three or more stars and can choose to publicly display their star rating. Eat Safe Brisbane stickers and certificates are also displayed at food outlets.
New South Wales Food Authority is now reviewing the voluntary “Scores on Doors” scheme. From early reports stakeholders are giving it the thumbs up for its achievements in lifting awareness and food safety compliance.
Now, more than ever, it is vital to know your responsibilities and ensure you are not breaching your licensing regulations. These schemes allow the public to know how well food businesses are complying with food safety and hygiene requirements.
Source: NSW OLGR 'Three strikes' disciplinary scheme Fact Sheet