Mandate: Alcohol Bill Must Ensure Bar Staff Protection

By Dave Simpson
Mandate: Alcohol Bill Must Ensure Bar Staff Protection

Mandate Trade Union has told the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Justice that one of the key priorities of the proposed Sale of Alcohol Bill must be to ensure bar employees’ safety and well-being.


According to a statement published on, its general secretary, Gerry Light, said that, under the bill, licences should be revoked if employment law is breached, representatives of staff should have a say in licence issuance and renewals, and there are currently labour shortages in the bar trade.

Mandate also proposed that trained trade union employees should be legally permitted to inspect bars to make sure that they are complying with health and safety legislation, according to the statement published on

Statement By Mandate’s General Secretary

The statement published on quoted Light as saying, “As a result of this labour shortage in the licensed trade, bar workers are working even longer hours than ever before, with many working until the very early hours of the morning, with clean-up duties. This is why we will be proposing that premium pay for those working after 11.30pm be mandatory, and there need to be stronger penalties for employers who don’t pay for ‘cleaning-up time’ and who breach the working-time legislation. In addition, bars should be required to provide transport home for all staff working unsocial hours – or, at the very least, pay them for transport home.

“Bar work is also a high-risk occupation, from a health-and-safety perspective, with staff having to deal with unnecessary levels of aggression – and sometimes violence and intimidation – from some customers who are intoxicated. This is why we in Mandate are calling for this bill to ensure that assaulting, threatening, abusing, obstructing or hindering workers is made a statutory offence.”


Read More: Bar Sales Increased Year On Year In November

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