Young people get alcohol easily

15 March 2019

A 17-year-old minor who wants to buy alcohol succeeds in more than six out of ten cases. Cafeterias, sports canteens, pubs/clubs/bars and home delivery services mostly do not comply with the alcohol purchasing limit of 18 years.

That is what research commissioned by State Secretary Paul Blokhuis (Public Health) shows. He sent a letter with the latest data to Dutch Parliament today. The Secretary of State is "disappointed" that the figures have hardly improved since 2016, when the previous study was done.

In his letter to Parliament Blokhuis states that a number of actions to strengthen compliance have already been started. For example, the approach of the municipality of Utrecht, in which the hospitality sector and the municipality are joining forces, will be expanded to ten other municipalities. In addition, in 2019, in consultation with the various providers, e-learning will be developed to promote responsible serving.

The compliance study has shown that the most important predictor for compliance with the age limit is to ask for the ID. This will be included in the development of the e-learnings. In addition, alcohol producers and the sports sector are joining the age limt campaign, NIX18. This means the NIX18 message will be included in many more adverts, thereby emphasizing that limit. In addition, the State Secretary will pay more attention for asking and showing the ID when purchasing alcohol.

Blokhuis also indicates that there is no incentive to comply with the law if it is not enforced. Therefore it is important that municipalities take their responsibility to enforce the law. For that reason, together with the VNG and others, he is preparing an enforcement protocol. He also intends to propose amendments to the Alcohol Licensing and Catering Act. Among other things, the new bill sets rules for home delivery services. They have the lowest compliance rate.

Young people get alcohol easily

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Dutch Institute for Alcohol Policy STAP
P.O. Box 9769
3506 GT Utrecht
The Netherlands
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