Copenhagen's 45,000 municipal employees are about to be told in no uncertain terms that work and alcohol do not mix. The City Council's Finance Committee last week passed a resolution that would ban the city's workers from consuming alcohol during work hours.
All 45,000 employees except the 55 men and women who serve as city councillors. For while the ban does make exceptions for special occasions such as parties and receptions, councillors will be exempt.
Alcohol is provided during meals served in conjunction with City Council meetings. No limits are placed on how much a councillor may drink, but a 'reasonable' amount of alcoholic drink is served on the city's tab.
The City Council has yet to vote on the resolution. When it does, councillors will be left considering whether they should set a good example or continue to enjoy the privileges of elected office.
'We should be careful about demanding that everyone has to be so equal,' Martin Hirsch, the spokesperson for Liberal city councillors, told Berlingske Tidende newspaper. 'I've got no problem with continuing to serve alcohol to politicians.'
He pointed out that city councillors are unpaid. 'This is a citizen duty, and it's not like people are hanging around getting smashed.'