As New Jersey begins to slowly open up bars and restaurants, two alcohol establishments in Mercer County are taking advantage of this down time to make sure their bar and wait staff are properly trained in best practices to prevent the overconsumption of alcohol and underage drinking. This month, Working Dog Winery in Robbinsville and Old Hights Brewery in Hightstown had their employees attend a five hour virtual TIPS training conducted by trainers Malissa Arnold and Barbara Sprechman. Through funding made possible by the NJ Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services, as well as federal funding from SAMHSA, Mercer Council is able to offer this training at no cost for alcohol establishments located in Mercer County.
TIPS (Training for Intervention Procedures) is a positive approach to ensuring responsible social enjoyment of alcohol beverages. By recognizing and building on alcohol servers' "people skills", they can take a leading role in the effort to prevention intoxication. The purpose of TIPS is to help people create the kind of environment that promotes safety and responsibility wherever alcohol is sold, served or consumed. After passing the TIPS exam, participants are certified in TIPS for a period of three years.