London Borough Councils receive Licensing SAVI to help hundreds of hospitality venues reopen safely
A new national police licensing initiative to keep licensed premises safe and secure is among a package of learning and development measures to support hospitality venues in London as they prepare to reopen after COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions.
The Business Recovery Training Package is being made available to Borough Councils across the capital by the London-based Safer Business Network (SBN), which assists with the management of Business Crime Reduction Partnerships across nine Boroughs, and Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (Police CPI), a police-owned organisation that works in partnership with the Police Service across the UK to deter and reduce crime.
It is hoped that Borough Councils will see the package as an important, practical and readily available way of supporting hospitality businesses, such as pubs, bars, restaurants and nightclubs, which have been impacted significantly since the first national lockdown was imposed 12 months ago to combat the spread of COVID-19.
Venues nominated by Borough Councils to take part in the training package will be offered access to Police CPI’s newly launched Licensing Security & Vulnerability Initiative (Licensing SAVI), which is an on-line self-assessment which brings together for the first time, the guidance, standards and advice that licensed premises need to meet the requirements of Responsible Authorities (including Police and Councils) in England and Wales.
Developed at the request of the Home Office and backed by the National Police Chiefs’ Council, Licensing SAVI provides definitive information on effective management practices and operational security as well as some practical examples, which some licensed premises may not have considered before. It includes COVID-19 guidance and advice. Licensing SAVI seeks help raise standards in licensed premises and reduce the risk of crime.
SBN will run two bespoke recovery training sessions for licensees, bar staff and security staff, as follows:
COVID-19 Re-opening, Safety Measures & Understanding Your Responsibilities
- summarise COVID-19 safety procedures
- examine COVID-19 regulations and guidance
- assist in understanding local approach to enforcement and engagement
- provide useful tips and advice ahead of re-opening.
Customer Service and Managing Conflict
- understand what makes good customer service
- how to give customers a positive experience
- recognise the signs of potential conflict
- how to manage conflict
- examine post incident management.
An additional package is also available to cover ‘Wellbeing at Work: You and Your Team’ which will address the impact on the mental health and wellbeing of staff arising from potential conflict over ongoing enforcement of COVID-19 requirements and verbal abuse resulting from other flash points that can occur in licensed premises, including refusal to serve alcohol either on the grounds of age or drunkenness for example.
Rita King, Joint Chief Executive Officer, SBN, said the hospitality sector has been devasted by the impact of the pandemic but at long last, businesses can start to see light at the end of the tunnel and look forward to re-opening and a brighter year ahead.
“We know that local authorities are working hard to support their local businesses through Government grant allocations and will also be looking at ways to support businesses as they reopen and begin the process of recovery. We believe our offer could fit well with their wider planning for business recovery and the reopening of High Streets in their Boroughs.”
Licensing SAVI’s Business Manager Mark Morgan, a former Merseyside Police Superintendent, said: “Licensing SAVI will help licensed premises from start-up businesses to established operators, from single independent premises to groups of venues, and from country pubs to large city nightclubs.”
Mark explained: “Licensed venues are likely to need to recruit new staff, reskill new and existing staff who may have been furloughed, and revisit their business plans for what could be a significant demand from customers.”
Organisations involved in the development of Licensing SAVI include many authoritative sources well-versed with industry good practice.