Government recognises Challenge 21 schemes do not discriminate age

Related tags Discrimination Government

The Government has recognised the need to exclude proof-of-age schemes in the industry from a motion to ban age discrimination under the Equality Act 2010.

In its response to the Equality Act 2010: Banning age discrimination in services, public functions and associations consultation, the Government said it will not ban Challenge 21 and Challenge 25 schemes because:

- This has important wider social implications and it is Government policy to cut under-age access to alcohol and drugs

- Age verification schemes have proven to be successful in helping to reduce under-age drinking

- There is no evidence that such schemes are harmful in terms of age discrimination

- The absence of a specific exception in this area could leave the issue uncertain and undermine the effectiveness of the policy

The consultation considered information from trade bodies that suggested that there would be “costs for the creation, implementation and training for a new scheme and additional on-going training costs”. The Association of

Convenience Stores believed that this would cost the sector £33m.

Brigid Simmonds, chief executive of the British Beer and Pub Association, said: “It’s good to see the Government has listened, as it is sensible to exclude proof-of-age schemes from this legislation, as we and other industry bodies had asked. This could have led to costly confusion for publicans.”

Related topics Legislation

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