House of Commons staff are being ordered to top up MPs’ glasses less frequently at functions amid concerns over the drinking culture at Westminster.
They will also receive training on how to refuse to serve drunken customers, and opening hours of bars on the estate could also be curtailed.
The moves by the Commons Commission follow the bar brawl which led to Eric Joyce’s conviction for punching and butting Tory MPs.
A spokesman for the cross-party committee said it agreed at a meeting that “a wider range of non-alcoholic drinks and lower strength beers will be provided in catering outlets”.
Staff serving alcohol will “receive further training and support in refusing to serve customers when necessary”, and “at receptions and events where alcohol was served, glasses would be topped up less frequently”.
A consultation is also to be held on the opening hours of bars on the Parliamentary Estate, and there will be efforts to publicise health and welfare support on offer to politicians and House staff.
Additionally, the Commission has acted to cut the amount of money being spent on fig trees which have been criticised for being a waste of money.
The cost of maintaining the shrubs, which dominate the MPs’ new offices in Portcullis House, has been around £44,000 a year. The commission says it has negotiated the maintenance deal of £18,500 which will include other shrubs on the parliamentary estate.
• This article was amended on 2 May 2012. The original said the shrub maintenance deal was cut from £44m to £18.5m and referred to olive trees, rather than fig trees. This has been corrected.
Article source: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/may/01/commons-bar-alcohol-parliament