The Last Drink Program is a public safety initiative designed to reduce impaired driving on Ontario highways. It started as a cooperative pilot program in 2011, and it’s run in partnership with the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) and law enforcement in Ontario.
In a nutshell, the program works like this – if any driver charged with impaired driving names a licensed establishment as the last place they drank alcohol, the police must inform the AGCO. The AGCO then has the opportunity to work with the establishment to enforce regulation of its policies.
Some of the mandates of the Last Drink Program include:
- Promoting public safety as a priority over beverage service, so servers know that impaired driving is a possibility and they work to prevent it
- Ensure establishment’s compliance with Ontario’s liquor laws
- Promote partnerships with law enforcement to reduce impaired driving and hold establishments accountable in the event of an impaired driving charge
In enforcing these regulations, both the OPP and the AGCO want establishments with a liquor license to be held accountable for the service they provide, and that accountability means the establishment will be kept in the loop if someone is charged with impaired driving and names them as their last spot for consuming alcohol.
If there is one violation or one person says they were served before being stopped by police, the establishment could receive a written warning. If it happens twice, they will receive a visit from a AGCO representative to counsel them on how to avoid these types of situations. A third time within a 24 month period will result in the establishment receiving a full investigation and possible disciplinary action.
The Last Drink Program is just one more step the OPP is taking to keep Ontario citizens safe when out on the roads. For more information on The Last Drink Program, visit the AGCO website.