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Alcohol Use Policy

In accordance with the decision of the Diocesan Council of the Episcopal Church in Vermont, it is only permissible to serve alcoholic beverages on diocesan property at functions sponsored by the Diocese of Vermont, in compliance with the laws of the State of Vermont and the municipality in which the function is located, subject to and in accordance with the following policies:

1. No alcoholic beverages may be served at anysuch diocesan sponsored event except by a holder of a Vermont license to serve alcoholic beverages, hired by the diocese. The licensee must provide the Canon to the Ordinary a copy of its license and a certificate of insurance at least 15 days prior to the event.

2. Only beer and wine may be offered at such sponsored events. No other alcoholic beverages are permitted. At no time may any alcoholic beverage, including beer and wine, be offered for sale.

3. The Canon to the Ordinary will notify the Diocesan Council in advance of the intent to serve alcoholic beverages at least 21 days prior to the sponsored event.

4. The organizers of the sponsored event serving alcoholic beverages shall specify the hours of availability of such beverages in advance, and such times shall not be extended.

5. Alternative and equally attractive non-alcoholic beverages shall be offered to attendees with equal dignity and hospitality at sponsored events. Suitable alternative beverages might include non-alcoholic sparkling wine, punch, soda drinks, fruit juice, coffee or tea.

6. Any beverage containing alcohol must be clearly labeled as such. This includes any food where alcohol has not been volatilized.

7. During sponsored events, an identifying sign shall be placed at any bowl of punch containing alcohol, as well as on all containers of alcoholic beverages not otherwise identified by label. All beverages containing alcohol must be served by employees of the licensee.

8. No person under the age of 21 is to be served alcoholic beverages under any circumstances, even with permission of his or her parent or guardian. No alcohol shall be consumed or be present at children or youth functions or retreats.

9. Advertising and publicity for diocesan sponsored events on diocesan property shall not mention alcoholic beverages even if they are to be available. For example: For a dinner party to be held at the Bishop Booth Conference Center, it would be appropriate to say “Beverages of your choice will be available before the meal.” Please do not say, “Cocktail hour at 6:30 PM.”

10. If an adult attending a diocesan sponsored event elects to consume alcohol, moderate usage is expected. Alcoholic beverages may not be offered to or provided to any person who appears intoxicated.

11. The group or committee hosting a diocesan sponsored event at which alcoholic beverages are served must assume moral and legal responsibility for those who might become impaired, under the influence, or intoxicated, including the provision of transportation for anyone whose driving might be impaired.

12. Diocesan sponsored events which are not held on diocesan property are subject to the terms of this policy.

13. Other organizations, individuals or groups using diocesan facilities are permitted to serve or consume alcoholic beverages on diocesan property by fully complying with the terms of this policy and providing a certificate of insurance in an amount specified by the Canon to the Ordinary.

14. The bishop’s house is on diocesan property and yet is a private home. As such the bishop assumes full legal, practical and moral responsibility for determining whether alcohol may or may not be served or consumed by guests. When a public event takes place at which alcohol is to be served, the proper permits and insurance will be acquired.

15. Rock Point School in its Student Handbook forbids the consumption of alcohol by its students with the consequence of suspension. When the students are not in attendance and organizations, individuals or groups use the school facilities and alcohol is to be served they must comply with the terms of this policy and provide a certificate of insurance in the amount specified by the Canon to the Ordinary. The holder of the liquor license must provide the Head of School a copy of its license and a certificate of insurance at least 15 days prior to the event.

16. This policy does not apply to any event, activity or social gathering of parishioners of The Episcopal Church in Vermont or diocesan staff which is held offsite and is not designated as a diocesan sponsored event. In such instances, the host(s) of the event, activity or gathering assumes full legal, practical and moral responsibility for determining whether alcohol may or may not be served or consumed by attendees in much the same manner he/she assumes such responsibility for any other gathering he/she might host not involving diocesan members or staff.

17. It is the duty of the Canon to the Ordinary and the Diocesan Council to assume responsibility for the dissemination of and the observance of these guidelines.

Approved by Diocesan Council 4/27/17

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