- Monday, 20 February 2012 15:06
The BC Civil Liberties Association has now joined the call for the BC government to reform its problematic and archaic liquor laws calling for an end to "bizarre" restrictions and for the modernization of the Liquor Control and Licensing Act. The story is covered in this Georgia Straight article: BC Civil Liberties Association weighs in on liquor licensing debate. You can also read the Association's well-reasoned open letter to the Minister here in which the President of the BCCLA points out that government policy in this area makes little sense. The issues have been brought to a head by the plight of the Rio Theatre and the Vancouver International Film Centre, both of which have been negatively affected by government policies which prohibit the sale of alcohol in establishments that are licensed to show movies. A recent attempt by the government to accommodate the Rio's situation may have caused more problems than it solved because the amendments failed to address the underlying policy problems at issue. For example, they permit the showing of movies in an establishment with a liquor-primary license but only if the movies are either shown outside the licensed hours of liquor service (which would normally encompass movie going times) or if the theatre applies to "de-license" itself every time a movie is shown. In the opinion of the theatres, neither option is a workable solution. Meanwhile, the Vancouver Sun reports that Rich Coleman, the minister responsible, has announced that there will be "more changes to BC liquor laws". Hopefully, the minister and the government will now commit themselves to providing real and significant change in the form of a complete modernization of the liquor law regime in BC.