A Group Randomized Trial of the Stop Service to Obviously-Impaired Patrons (S-STOP) Program to Prevent Overservice in Bars and Restaurants in College Communities

BACKGROUND: College student drinking in on-premises establishments has been associated with heavy alcohol consumption and a range of problems including assault, fighting, risky sex, and drinking and driving. Although more strictly enforcing overservice laws might reduce heavy drinking in on-premises establishments, law enforcement agencies have few resource-efficient tools for doing so, resulting in these laws seldom being enforced. OBJECTIVES: In this paper, we report the results of an evaluation of the Stop Service to Obviously-impaired Patrons (S-STOP) program that was implemented in 303 bars and restaurants in 18 university communities in California using a randomized cross-over design (early vs. delayed implementation). The S-STOP program: (a) deployed pseudo-intoxicated patrons who attempted to purchase a drink when showing obvious signs of intoxication; (b) provided feedback to owners and managers on staff performance; and (c) offered free online refresher training for staff. RESULTS: Overall, alcohol servers in bars and restaurants in these college communities were willing to serve a pseudo-intoxicated mystery shopper 90% of the time. The study found no evidence that S-STOP reduced the prevalence of alcohol sales to apparently impaired patrons during the two intervention stages of the study. CONCLUSIONS: The findings highlight the need for developing effective interventions to prevent overservice and should prompt college and university leaders to take the lead in addressing the problem of alcohol overservice at on-premises establishments by working with community leaders, law enforcement, and retailers.

Additional Info

  • Authors:

    Grube, J. W.;Krevor, B. S.;DeJong, W.

  • Issue: volume 56
  • More Information:

    For more information about this absctract, please contact
    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. at the Deutsche Weinakademie GmbH

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