New Bill Would Allow Retirement Communities To Get Liquor Licenses

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You retirement plans may have just gotten quite a bit more fun. Eventually all soon-to-be or current retirees must assess their future and decide if they want to spend their twilight years in a retirement community. Of course these communities have their own set of standards and rules which you might fear will cramp your style but there is one major change coming up: there is a growing trend and even upcoming legislation that will allow continuing care communities and retirement communities attain liquor licenses.

The Underlying Dangers of Post-Retirement Drinking

It may seem strange that a facility that specifically caters to of-age adults would not have wine, beer, or liquor available. Although some people may prefer a dry retirement community it does seem odd that that seems to be the norm, as a National Health Interview Survey saw that 50% of polled men and 39% of the polled women reported having at least one drink a day. The data from the baby boomers suggested that their drinking habits stemmed from both boredom and a hunt for a good time.

Alcohol consumption does present a kind of danger as we age, however. The extra calories can contribute to obesity and add to other existing health problems, while the liquor itself may add to the lack of balance that adults struggle with as they age, which can increase your chances of falling and breaking a hip or other bone. The National Institutes of Health also found that alcohol is also a heavy factor in 60% of fatal burn injuries, homicides, and drownings, and 40% of fatal car crashes, suicides, and fatal falls. Retirees are now living longer than ever but most are doing so with the help of various medications that are dangerous when mixed with alcohol.

The Right to Choose a Drink

However, whatever the data suggests retirees are adults who have their own decisions to make when it comes to alcohol consumption. These are not teenagers who will be cut-off from their alcohol supply if the facility isn’t stocked; baby boomers can simply go out and buy their own. The legislation would not push for hosting keggers in retirement communities, but rather allow residents to have a glass of wine or a cocktail with dinner or indulge in other moderate drinking habits. Introducing happy hour won’t be so much a revolution as a chance to offer adults the same choice they’ve had for years: the opportunity to go for a beer if and when they want.

If and when the bill passes, retirement communities will have to apply for their licenses the same as restaurants and bars do. The retiree residents could then be free to order their beverages on the on-site restaurant or even to their room. While the bill sounds like a radical change, it’s might not be quite the lifestyle adjustment for most seniors: in continuing care communities and retirement communities where liquor is not sold, residents bring their own booze to their room. Still, liquor licenses would open up a door to moderate social drinking. And in a place that is supposed to be a home to these residents, it seems only right to give these seniors the option to include alcohol into their lifestyle if they so choose.