SBPA questions new ID card proposals in Scotland

Related tags Identity document Sbpa Scottish government

Discretion: barstaff might refuse all unfamiliar ID cards
Discretion: barstaff might refuse all unfamiliar ID cards
The Scottish Beer & Pub Association (SBPA) has questioned the “practical benefit” of introducing further forms of ID that can be used to prove age in Scotland.

The Scottish Government last month closed a consultation on proposals to add military identity cards, European identity cards and biometric residents’ permits to the list of acceptable proof-of-age documents.

The SBPA, whose members operate 1,200 of Scotland’s 5,000 pubs, supported the proposal to add military ID to the list, but questioned plans to introduce European identity cards, fearing it could complicate the process.

“Adding a further 30 or so forms of identity to the existing 30 or so will not simplify that process, indeed it may result in operators using their own discretion to refuse any of the additional forms of ID, making no difference to the current position,” its submission stated.
Patrick Browne, SBPA chief executive, said: “We see little added benefit to this change, to either operators, their staff or indeed the majority of customers, even foreign ones.

“If the Scottish Government is minded to make these changes then we suggest it needs to provide support to retailers. This is in order to allow them to facilitate the changes in a timescale that is mutually convenient and acknowledges the still recent introduction of Challenge 25 in October 2011.”

Robert Humphreys, chairman of the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS), an initiative designed to help young people easily prove their age wherever they are in the UK, said the PASS board was concerned about “proliferation” and “any complexity that results”.

“These moves — while understandable — would add complexity to the al-ready difficult job, so we are very sympathetic to the SBPA,” Humphreys said.

“It is very clear from the evidence that this is a training challenge for managers who employ door staff. If there is a single message, it’s that we’d like proof of age to be simpler. The simpler it is, the better for the trade and licensing authorities.”

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