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DALLAS -- 7-Eleven Inc. is expanding its plan to curb illegal underage alcohol sales by scanning the 2-D code on the back of customers' driver's license or identification card to Washington starting this month. The scanning technology, which verifies the birth date stored on the card but does not store any other information, will roll out to each of the c-store chain's 26 Washington stores.
"We believe that this new system takes compliance at 7-Eleven to the next level," said Keith Jones, senior director of government affairs for 7-Eleven. "Illegal sales of age-restricted items to minors are a serious concern for Washington. Over the last 15 years laws have been enacted and enforced to restrict the sale of alcohol, tobacco and potential inhalants to minors. Although making an illegal underage purchase is harder than ever, there is still work to be done and preventative measures to be taken."
The scanning technology age-verification plan first went into effect last month in California, as CSNews Online previously reported.
"7-Eleven responded to the needs of its franchisees," stated franchise owner Iris Yost. "We are passionate about not selling age-restricted items to minors. Because laws often place the burden on the store operator, franchisee or selling cashier, we need every protection available. The ID Scan technology we now have will go a long way in stemming wrongful age-restricted sales."
7-Eleven is underwriting the cost to upgrade all franchise registers at no cost to franchisees, according to the announcement.
"7-Eleven considers this a small price to pay to combat the serious nature of illegal underage sales," said Jones. "Penalties for such offenses are steep with an ultimate result of a possible loss of alcohol license." With more than 25 7-Eleven franchise stores residing in Washington, 7-Eleven is committed to using this new technology in an effective and positive manner.