boozing babesIt’s a parent’s nightmare and an instant public relations crisis.

This article on USA Today looks into a couple of these restaurant mishaps – babies being served booze! Something most of us never thought would happen is now front page news and on the minds of a lot of parents.

Within one month two different incidents were reported at two of the nation’s largest casual dining chains, Applebee’s and Olive Garden.

So how do these restaurants win back the loyalty of worried parents? Well, they can either ignore the issue and release statements like this one made by Applebee’s.

“In an industry that serves more than 150 million meals every day, these are two extremely rare occurrences. However, we believe that even one incident like this is too many.”

Or they could face the issue, react quickly and positively. A couple of suggestions from restaurant operators: retrain staff, rethink alcoholic drink policies, limit bar use, be forthcoming and involve consumers in new regulations. Concerning communications get your messaging clear – from the hostess and servers on the front line, to your media statements.

After all, this juicy story is out and now diners want to know, what restaurants will do to ensure their child will never be served anything more to drink than a soft drink.