If you have a story call our newsdesk on 01722 426511 or email us. To advertise call 01722 426500.
Tackling antisocial behaviour
COMMUNITIES should be more involved in tackling antisocial behaviour fuelled by alcohol, according to Wiltshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner.
Angus Macpherson told an alcohol awareness conference held in Chippenham on Thursday about new ideas on how to support offenders whose behaviour is linked to drinking, to break cycles of offending, and support victims who are harmed as result.
Through his £1m Innovation Fund, Mr Macpherson has commissioned Neighbourhood Justice Panels – a form of restorative justice involving community volunteers facilitating meetings between offenders and victims – to be rolled out across Wiltshire and Swindon.
He said: “How Neighbourhood Justice Panels work with the statutory and voluntary agencies will be crucial in helping those who abuse alcohol face up to their responsibility.
“There is some way to go – we need referral mechanisms and safeguards. I am certain, however, that we need something more effective than an £80 fine, known as a Penalty Notice for Disorder.
“We need something local, something immediate, something that brings in local agencies and local help when it is needed. There is no reason why the outcome of a Neighbourhood Justice Panel could not be an agreement for the offender to attend Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). Neighbourhood Justice Panels are voluntary, just as is AA.”
The Commissioner spoke at the one day conference looking at the effects of alcohol misuse in Wiltshire, which was arranged by Alcoholics Anonymous as its contribution to alcohol awareness in 2013. Applications are now being taken for the second round of the Innovation Fund.
The deadline for applications is November 15, and more information is available at wiltshire-pcc.gov.uk.
Comments are closed on this article.