National age card two years away'

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A genuinely nationwide proof-of-age scheme could still be two years away. That was the verdict of senior industry figures following the official...

A genuinely nationwide proof-of-age scheme could still be two years away. That was the verdict of senior industry figures following the official launch of Government-backed PASS ­ an initiative aiming to act as an umbrella for existing cards before replacing them with one that carries a single logo. British Institute of Innkeeping chief executive John McNamara hailed PASS ­ Proof of Age Standards Scheme ­ as "long overdue and very important". But he told the Morning Advertiser after the meeting: "I still think we are looking at two years before this really gets off the ground." PASS is the brainchild of the British Retail Consortium and will be publicised on the Home Office website. But Government ministers, including those who were present at the launch, have made it clear there will be no public money involved. Home Office junior minister Bob Ainsworth told the meeting: "We are totally and absolutely behind this initiative." The scheme will be policed by the Trading Standards Institute, whose chief executive, Ron Gainsford, revealed it had been a "very long journey in some ways". He added: "We have been concerned by the competition between different schemes and we hope PASS will address that." Citizencard chief executive Andrew Chevis said Citizencard would bear the extra cost of putting in the official logo if it had to.

Related topics: Legislation

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