Forced to sell alcohol to drunk clients to protect themselves: SAQ workers

SAQ workers say they don't want to risk their personal safety by refusing to sell to drunk clients including minors

Some SAQ employees are calling for increased security and training because of situations where they say they're forced to sell alcohol to aggressive and drunk clients or minors.

SAQ union president Katia Lelièvre said some of her members who work alone in a store don't want to risk their personal safety by refusing to sell alcohol to drunk clients. And when faced with threats and intimidation by drunk and rowdy minors or older clients, she said her members aren't going to say no.

"They feel ill at ease to be forced to sell alcohol to drunk minors or older people even though they know by law, they're not allowed to sell to minors, but they do because they feel they're in danger," Lelièvre said.

She said she encourages workers to fill out incident reports so they can keep tabs on such incidents and follow up on them.

SAQ spokesman Renaud Dugas agrees, telling CJAD 800 News that out of the 50-million sales transactions a year, these incidents are generally isolated cases. Dugas said they've stepped up security measures since a Baie d'Urfé store employee was shot in 2010 and is now a quadriplegic.

Lelievre said they're still after the SAQ to not have any workers be alone especially in the suburbs where the risk is higher.

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  1. Paul posted on 01/06/2014 01:59 PM
    Are bartenders allowed to sell booze to drunk clients using the same reasoning? They want to be safe too. If government employees are permitted to sell booze to drunks then the private sector should be allowed to do the same.
  2. Sic posted on 01/07/2014 05:33 AM
    What about young people that work the graveyard shifts at corner stores for minimum wage.
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