Highway Safety - EASY
Eliminating Alcohol Sales to Youth Program
The Surgeon General’s 2007 “Call to Action to Prevent and Reduce Underage Drinking” encourages communities to “enforce uniformly and consistently all policies and laws against underage alcohol use.” Even before this call to action was issued, Utah had implemented this recommendation through the EASY alcohol compliance check program.
During the program’s third year, law enforcement agencies conducted nearly 30% more compliance checks than they did in the program’s first year. Agencies along the Wasatch Front have been able to maintain the most consistency in conducting compliance checks. Smaller and rural areas law enforcement agencies have not been able to maintain as high a level of consistency, due to challenges ranging from reduced budgets to personnel turnover. The statewide compliance rate increased by three percentage points during FY2009 to 87.4%, ideally starting a trend that consistent compliance checks will keep moving forward.
The mandatory retail training is moving toward institutionalization as retailers large and small continue to comply with the EASY program’s retail training requirements.
The Strategic Prevention Framework process has already gotten more law enforcement agencies to conduct compliance checks, and will continue to do so as the coalitions strengthen community-wide prevention efforts.
The 2009 Student Health and Risk Prevention survey results show a very discernible downward trend in alcohol use among Utah’s youth. Through comprehensive efforts, Utah has made significant progress in reducing underage drinking. The EASY compliance check program is just one aspect of Utah’s campaign to reduce underage drinking, but all of the aspects work together to insure the health and safety of the state’s young people. Ideally, funding for the EASY program will be maintained beyond FY2010 so law enforcement agencies can continue to conduct alcohol compliance checks and work toward the ultimate goal of eliminating alcohol sales to youth.
The EASY Program is an innovative and focused approach which aims to use a total community mobilization to reduce underage drinking in Utah.
The Highway Safety Office administers the compliance check portion of the program. The forms listed below will assist law enforcement agencies with reporting compliance check information and requesting reimbursement.
The letter templates are available for you to use to correspond with retailers regarding their performance. The use of these is optional.
Brochures are also available for anyone (law enforcement, retail outlets, cities, counties, local prosecutors, and licensing bureaus) seeking detailed information on the EASY Program.
E.A.S.Y. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is E.A.S.Y.?
Senate Bill 58, Eliminate Alcohol Sales to Youth, was passed by the 2006 Legislature. It may be viewed in its entirety at the Legislature’s Web site: www.le.state.ut.us The law:
- Limits youth access to alcohol at grocery and convenience stores
- Requires mandatory and standardized training for all grocery and convenience store employees who sell beer or directly supervise the sale of beer
- Funds a statewide media and education campaign to alert youth, parents, and communities of the dangers of alcohol to the developing teen brain and increased addiction from early use.
When does the E.A.S.Y. legislation go into effect?
July 1, 2006
Who will provide the mandatory training to sales clerks and supervisors?
The State Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health will not be conducting these seminars. The Division will “certify” providers to conduct these seminars. As providers are approved and certified, their names will be added to the “Approved/Certified Providers” list on our Web site http://www.dsamh.utah.gov. It is up to individuals and/or their employer to contact an approved provider and arrange training.
How soon do employees need to complete this training?
For clerks and supervisors currently employed by a convenience or grocery store, training must be completed by October 1, 2006. Any individual hired and employed after September 1, 2006, must complete the training within 30 days.
Is this training a one-time event or do I need to recertify?
Once you have completed the Off Premise Retailer Alcohol Training and Education Seminar your certification is good for 5 years unless you receive a penalty for selling to minors. Those penalties are outlined completely in the bill.
Is this the same training as Alcohol Beverage Server?
No. Alcohol Beverage Server training covers the sale/supervision of sale of alcohol for "On Premise" use in restaurants, clubs, taverns and bars. It does not cover the sale or supervision of a sale in convenience or grocery stores.
My local city or county government has already required that I be trained for off premise sales of alcohol. How does this State law effect my certification and do I need to be retrained?
It depends. In order for your certification to remain in effect, the individual or company that initially certified you, must become an approved/certified provider through the state and submit a plan to educate you on the new administrative and civil penalties. If your provider completes these requirements, your certification is good until January 2008. If your provider does not complete these requirements, you will need to be retrained by a State approved/certified provider. Check with your trainer to determine whether your certification will remain in effect.
How do I become an “Approved/Certified Provider”?
Complete the application for Off Premise Retailer Alcohol Training and Education Seminar Provider. Submit the application and your curriculum to the State Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health. The application form can be obtained on the Division Web site.
As a provider applicant, where can I find the information regarding the effects of alcohol on the developing youth brain and statistical information required in the training?
All the information required for the training can be found in the brochures on the Division Web site, http://www.dsamh.utah.gov
If I have more questions about E.A.S.Y., whom do I contact?
You can contact the Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health at 801-538-3939.
If I have more questions about Utah’s Alcohol laws, whom do I contact?
You can contact the Department of Alcohol Beverage Control at 801-977-6800.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Utah Highway Safety Office