Over the past few years, Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries saw a dramatic increase in brazen thefts and robberies in our Winnipeg Liquor Marts.
In response to this situation, we installed controlled entrances at all 36 Winnipeg Liquor Marts by December 16, 2020. Since these controlled entrances were installed, we have seen much success with this initiative and a significant reduction in thefts and robberies at Winnipeg Liquor Marts.
As a retailer that prides itself on customer service and offering a modern, shopping experience, we know these measures are inconvenient, however, providing a safe environment for our employees and customers comes first. We look forward to welcoming you at your local Liquor Mart where, once inside, you can expect the same great customer service you have always known.
At those stores with a controlled entrance, the inner doors to the Liquor Mart are locked. Before being allowed entry, customers must provide valid photo identification to the security guard on duty. The ID is scanned, and information is retained for 21 days. Customers may bring minors 11 and under in their care into the store. Minors do not require ID.
• Remember that your safety is more important than anything you’re carrying.
• Park and walk in well-lit, busy areas.
• Stay off your phone while walking. Keep your attention on your surroundings.
• If you get approached outside or see someone suspicious, go to the nearest open business.
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We urge everyone to wear a mask while visiting our stores. Mask use and physical distancing are strongly recommended and appreciated, but masks are not required. When you enter the store, you will be asked to briefly remove your face mask so we can make sure you match your photo ID, and that you are over the age of 18. Hand sanitizer is available in the vestibule for you to use before and after you remove your mask.
Asking customers to identify themselves as they enter our stores has proven to be an effective deterrent to the thefts and robberies we've experienced over the past few years. Since we’ve implemented ID at the controlled entrances, we have gone from hundreds of thefts and robberies weekly down to fewer than a dozen. We have also had a positive response from both employees and customers who have indicated they feel safe working and shopping in a Liquor Mart again.
We urge everyone to wear a mask while visiting our stores. Mask use and physical distancing are strongly recommended and appreciated, but masks are no longer required.
When you enter the store, you will be asked to briefly remove your mask to confirm your identity and ensure that you are over the age of 18. Hand sanitizer is available in the vestibule for you to use before and after you remove your mask.
You will be asked to briefly remove or lower your mask so that we can confirm your identification and that you are over 18 years old. If you refuse to remove or lower your mask, you will not be allowed to enter the Liquor Mart.
Hand sanitizer is available in the Liquor Mart vestibule for you to use before and after you touch your mask. You can adjust, lower or remove your mask without compromising its integrity by using the ear loops or ties. Try to avoid touching your face, eyes and mouth when removing or lowering your face mask.
If you are asked to remove your mask at the point of sale for age verification, ask the Liquor Mart representative for some hand sanitizer before and after you touch your mask. If you decline to remove your mask, service will be refused.
This Liquor Mart policy of not covering your face while in our stores has been in place for many years. It has always applied to anything covering your face like Halloween masks, balaclavas, large scarves, hoods, motorcycle helmets, and religious face coverings, and now it also applies to personal protective equipment like face masks.
By briefly lowering or removing your mask, you help us make sure the person trying to enter our store matches the identification they have presented, reducing the risk that a thief could use stolen identification to enter a Liquor Mart to commit a crime.
Liquor Marts are not alone in asking for face coverings to be briefly lowered or removed for the purpose of identification. Retail operations, such as cannabis stores, as well as the Winnipeg Richardson International Airport (pre-boarding), also require the brief removal of masks for this same reason.
Manitoba Public Health has indicated that people can temporarily remove their mask while in an indoor public place to establish their identity.
Non-medical and medical-grade disposable face masks are acceptable, as are reusable face masks. An effective reusable face mask must cover your nose, mouth and chin.
It’s also important to remember that wearing a mask does not replace physical distancing and hand hygiene requirements. Please maintain a distance of 2 metres/6 feet from others in the store whenever possible. Hand sanitizer is also available at all Liquor Marts for your use.
You can adjust, lower or remove your mask without compromising its integrity by using the ear loops or ties. Try to avoid touching your face, eyes and mouth when removing or lowering your face mask.
If you are asked to lower or remove your mask at the point of sale for age verification, ask the Liquor Mart representative for some hand sanitizer before and after you touch your mask.
Public health guidelines recommend non-medical face coverings where proper physical distancing cannot be maintained. For this reason, we have implemented staggered customer entry to ensure that proper social distancing requirements are maintained within the vestibule.
If you are concerned that proper protocols are not being followed at the controlled entrance, please speak with the store manager.
Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries has continued to ensure full compliance with all privacy related legislation and has worked closely with the Manitoba Ombudsman’s office since the outset of the controlled entrance program. This has included the submission and review of a Privacy Impact Assessment.
The same forms of ID that are already accepted for proof of age are accepted for entry at the security station. These include:
Alternatively, two forms of government-issued identification may be shown, one of which must be photo ID. Examples include:
If you still have questions or concerns about what forms of identification are accepted at controlled entrances, please send us a message.
Liquor Mart Anti-Theft Strategy Update
Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries is seeing encouraging results from its enhanced strategy to target Liquor Mart theft.
“Since the measures were announced in March, we have seen a 23 per cent reduction in theft and robbery incidents,” said Liquor & Lotteries President Peter Hak. “While these are still early results, we are cautiously optimistic they are trending in the right direction.”