The decision by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission to allow unlimited, same-day deliveries of beer and wine to residences has put a major dent in efforts to halt the state’s underage drinking epidemic.
As a result, Oregon Partnership will closely monitor the effects of the new policy, collect data about home delivery trends from around the country, and consider backing legislation that would make it more difficult for teens, fraternities, sororities and college residences to order beer for delivery.
“This change is going to make it so much easier for teens to obtain beer and nothing good will happen from that,” said Judy Cushing, President/CEO of Oregon Partnership who testified before the OLCC, warning of huge ramifications as a result of the rule change. “How in the world is the OLCC going to enforce this? We’re just opening the barn door to a surge in underage drinking.”
The new rule takes effect June 29th. It replaces a temporary rule that allowed grocers to deliver up to five gallons of beer or two cases of wine. But before this year, all same-day, at home deliveries of beer and wine were banned.
“I shudder to think how easy it will be for teens to go on line and put in orders for beer for a party that night,” said Cushing. “Upwards to 30 percent of retail establishments have been found to sell alcohol to teens. Can you imagine the abuse that will result with home deliveries?”
Dave Hogan’s article in today’s Oregonian included reaction from Cushing, who also criticized the OLCC for proposing the change for unlimited same-day delivery the afternoon before the final vote.
Click here to read the Oregonian Article. “We work very well with the OLCC and partner with them on a variety of public service campaigns and projects involving the prevention of underage drinking,” added Cushing. “But this is a matter that should not have been changed at the very last minute before the commission took a vote. Parents, youth service organizations and advocates should have had some time to respond to the proposal and make our views known.”
Oregon Partnership urges those who agree that it would just add to the incidence of underage drinking to write the OLCC.
About Oregon Partnership:
Oregon Partnership is a statewide nonprofit that has worked to promote healthy kids and communities for well over a decade by raising awareness about drug and alcohol issues, providing drug prevention education in classrooms, and 24-hour crisis lines for people needing help. To learn more, visit www.orpartnership.org.