Alcohol server class in Spanish

By MIKE WIGGINS
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Ivette Alejandre was prepared to hire a Spanish-language translator to accompany her employees to a class to learn their responsibilities when serving and selling alcohol.

But thanks to a new program, the manager of El Tapatio restaurant in Fruita can hold onto her money.

For the first time, the city of Grand Junction will offer alcohol-service training in Spanish to local Spanish-speaking hotel and restaurant workers, as more and more liquor-license holders employ workers whose first language isn’t English. The class will be July 29 and is free.

City Clerk Stephanie Tuin said the city received feedback through its English-language class that there is a need for a class catered to Spanish speakers.

“We have a number of establishments where there is somewhat of a language barrier,” Tuin said.

Like the English-language classes, the Spanish-language class will train employees on server responsibility, identification checking and enforcement, recognizing signs of intoxication and guarding against over service of customers.

“It’s pretty good because all of our employees speak Spanish. It’s their main, primary language,” said Alejandre, who plans to send three employees to the class. “Since we serve alcohol in the business, it’s good for them to know all the training.”

With no bilingual employees in the Grand Junction Police Department, Tuin said the city reached out to the Montrose Police Department, which will send an officer to conduct the training.

Tuin said city officials plan to record the class on a DVD for future use.

Employees of liquor stores that offer tastings must attend training offered by the city and obtain a certificate. City officials recommend, but don’t require, the training for other establishments that serve alcohol.


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