Those looking to unwind with a drink on campus this weekend should be prepared to prove more than just their age.
While valid student, faculty or alumni identification [UNB/STU/NBCC] has always been a requirement for admittance into campus bars, enforcement of this rule is being amped up in the wake of increased violence and illicit drug use on campus in recent months.
“Over the last few years we have seen an increase in the use of cocaine and other drugs (prescription and illegal) by our patrons. There has been a number of incidents on campus involving cocaine use or possession, and incidents of violence, mostly by students but also non-student guests,” said Patrick Hanson, manager of the Cellar, in an email to The Brunswickan.
“Given these issues, we are trying to be as diligent as possible to ensure only those non-students who are here as guests of students are being permitted entry to the Cellar.”
As it currently stands, one must either have valid UNB/STU/NBCC identification, or be signed in as a guest of someone with valid UNB/STU/NBCC identification in order to be admitted into either the Cellar or the Social Club. Alumni are considered lifetime members of both bars and do not need to have valid student ID, but must sign themselves in and state their previous student number. Alumni also have the right to sign in guests.
Hanson added while this has always been the Cellar’s policy based on its lease agreement with the university as well as its liquor license, enforcement has not always been up to snuff.
“From time to time we tend to get a little lazy in our enforcement of this policy . . .” he said, claiming that this is because “95 per cent of our customers are students/staff/faculty and maybe five per cent are non-student guests.”
A representative of the Social Club could not be reached for comment.
This move by bar officials to better identify patrons is one welcomed by UNB’s director of security and traffic, Bruce Rogerson; in fact, it’s something he himself has pushed for in recent months.
“The big thing for me is that the Student Union Building is a student union building . . . [Shouldn’t students] feel comfortable coming to the Student Union Building in lieu of going downtown?” Rogerson said.
His concerns came in the wake of several recent incidents at campus bars; including several assaults involving non-students at both the Social Club and the Cellar earlier this month, and an incident where a non-student was kicked out of the Cellar for openly using cocaine on a table. Several of those involved could not be identified by UNB Security.
“If they’re students [involved in an incident] we got through the student disciplinary code and if not, then depending on the severity of the incident, we issue trespass notices, which means they’re not allowed on campus,” said Rogerson.
“I just want to be a little more vigilant on who’s getting in to either space.”