Lessons must be learned from refresher meltdown

By Gillian McKenzie

IT has loomed large on the Scottish trade’s horizon for some time now.
And as the deadlines by which the first ‘batch’ of personal licence holders had to complete refresher training (August 31) and notify their relevant board (November 30) approached, many predicted a shortfall.
Few, however, anticipated the numbers that have emerged in recent days.
At the time of writing, figures from 17 boards revealed that more than 7000 PLHs (those who received their licence on or before September 1, 2009) will have their licence revoked having failed to complete refresher training and/or notify their board by the deadlines – and that figure was expected to top 10,000 taking all boards into account.
Granted, that will include those who no longer require a licence and have allowed it to lapse. But it still leaves a huge number who have missed the deadlines.
It’s clear something has gone seriously wrong.
The reasons for non-compliance are unclear. Some have suggested misinformation over the deadlines is to blame; others reckon many did not realise it was a ‘two step’ process; and some think it was a mere oversight.
Whatever the reason, there are serious ramifications – the licence will be revoked and there is a five-year ban on applying for a new one.
And that’s not the end of the story.
This is just the fallout from the first ‘batch’ of PLHs, with many more facing refresher deadlines in the coming months.
To them the message is clear: miss the deadlines at your peril.