By Morrill & Associates
To ease shopping inconvenience and create new job opportunities for youth in restaurants and supermarkets, the Chicago City Council today passed an ordinance that will allow employees between the ages of 18 and 21 to serve, sell and stock liquor in the City of Chicago. The measure was co-sponsored by Aldermen Sawyer (6th Ward) and Tom Tunney (44th Ward).
The ordinance represents a logical solution to a common inconvenience: wait time at a supermarket for a minor cashier to call his or her manager to ring up an alcohol sale. This change would allow for a more seamless transaction, and would further allow for adults who are not yet of legal drinking age to be employed in roles that require the handling of liquor – hopefully putting a dent in the City’s 58.2% unemployment rate among young adults. As Alderman Tunney (44th Ward) said during the committee hearing, “This is a really logical step and an incremental step about how do we provide more opportunities for our youth.”
Brought to the City Council by the Illinois Retail Merchants Association (IRMA), the ordinance passed through the Council’s License Committee last Wednesday. On behalf of MIRA, we were in touch with IRMA and sponsors as this issue moved forward.
The ordinance will not apply to sports stadiums and will only allow minors to serve, sell and stock liquor; opening bottles and cans or mixing drinks will still be off limits. Other Illinois municipalities have enacted similar ordinances regarding alcohol sales by employees under 21.
The ordinance now moves on to the Mayor for signature.