Alcoholic Drinks: Young People

Home Department written question – answered on 22nd October 2008.

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Photo of Siân James Siân James Labour, Swansea East

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what enforcement campaigns her Department is conducting to prevent (a) underage drinking, (b) the sale of alcohol to young people and (c) alcohol-related crime and disorder.

Photo of Alan Campbell Alan Campbell Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office) (Crime Reduction)

Building upon the successes of the previous Alcohol Misuse Enforcement campaign (AMEC), the Tackling Under Age Sales of Alcohol to Children (TUSAC) and the Responsible Alcohol Sales campaign (RASC) the Home Office is proposing to run a different style of campaign this year.

We are making funds available to support local problem solving projects, which can address local priorities which stem from alcohol related issues. Unlike previous enforcement campaigns this year's campaign is much less prescriptive and will also enable partnerships to bid for varying amounts of money to undertake more protracted and in depth problem solving work.

This year we have set broad strategic objectives for the campaign, and have invited CDRPs/CSP's to submit bids, up to a maximum of £30,000. The following principles detailed in the Safe Sensible Social strategy will be considered in order to decide on funding.

The Government's vision is to produce a long-term and sustainable reduction in the harms associated with alcohol and drugs, where there is a safe, sensible and social drinking culture; where violent and antisocial behaviour is not tolerated; where young people are prevented from experiencing poor outcomes resulting from alcohol misuse; where those who drink alcohol are aware of the risks involved; and where those that are drinking too much receive the advice and support they need.

The Government's delivery strategy for reducing the harms caused by alcohol is divided into three strands:

first, the laws and licensing powers introduced to tackle alcohol-fuelled crime and disorder, protect young people and bear down on irresponsibly managed premises need to be used widely and effectively; second, focusing prevention, information and support, and where appropriate the criminal justice system at the minority of drinkers who cause or experience the most harm to themselves, their communities and their families. These are: 18 to 24-year-old binge drinkers; young people under 18 who drink alcohol; and harmful drinkers; and third, collaborative work by all agencies to shape an environment that actively promotes sensible drinking. Delivery will draw on the knowledge, skills, commitment and ability of local communities, the police, local authorities, prison and probation staff, the NHS, third sector organisations, the alcohol industry, the wider business community and the media.

Completed bids will be submitted by 7 November 2008, and partnerships will be notified if their bid has been successful by 14 November 2008. Funded partnership activity can take place from this date through to the end of March 2009.

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