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Key Stakeholder Responses to Impaired Server Ordinances in Selected Wisconsin Municipalities

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Objective: Alcohol-related issues are prevalent in Wisconsin and nationwide. Wisconsin's unique drinking culture has exacerbated these concerns and motivated policymaker response. Some Wisconsin municipalities have employed impaired server ordinances (ie, "sober server ordinances") to assuage alcohol-related incidents. This paper focuses on key stakeholder experiences with impaired server ordinances in selected Wisconsin municipalities and addresses policymaker implications. Methods: Telephone interviews (N = 19) were carried out with law enforcement officials and tavern personnel in 5 Wisconsin municipalities having sober server ordinances. Results: Law enforcement officials' preferences generally reflected local ordinance language. Both stakeholder groups agreed that these ordinances reflected best practice, yet, were not enforcement priorities. Stakeholders cited that ordinance awareness alone might improve server behavior. Conclusions: In these stakeholders' views, sober server ordinances have a small effect on reducing alcohol-related incidents. Further research is needed to inform decision-makers on best practices for decreasing alcohol abuse in Wisconsin.
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Keywords: ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION; ALCOHOL-RELATED LAWS; IMPAIRED SERVER ORDINANCE; LAW ENFORCEMENT; SOBER SERVER ORDINANCE; TAVERN EMPLOYEES

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 May 2018

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  • Health Behavior and Policy Review is a rigorously peer-reviewed scholarly bi-monthly publication that seeks manuscripts on health behavior or policy topics that represent original research, including papers that examine the development, advocacy, implementation, or evaluation of policies around specific health issues. The Review especially welcomes papers that tie together health behavior and policy recommendations. Articles are available through subscription or can be ordered individually from the Health Behavior and Policy Review site.
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