Local alcohol harm initiative

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Inspector Tony Boyce and his Coleraine Neighbourhood Team contributed to a national policing campaign relating to the harm caused by alcohol last week.

The live posts, using the hash tag #alcoholharm, showed the work of local police in dealing with matters related to excessive drinking last Wednesday, September 24, in the Portrush and Portstewart areas.

The live posts covered on street drinking, drink driving, illegal drug use and drink related anti-social behaviour. The posts generated much community commentary about excessive drinking and the level of police resources dedicated to the issue.

Foyle PSNI officers made a similar contribution to the Association of Chief Police Officers initiative (ACPO) alongside with a host of UK police forces.

Figures released by ACPO suggest that nearly 50 per cent of all violent crime is alcohol-related. Offenders are also thought to be under the influence of alcohol in nearly half of all incidents of domestic abuse, and in 25 to 33 per cent of known child abuse cases.

PSNI Inspector Tony Boyce praised the initiative: “The live posts gave people an insight into the level of police resource dedicated to tackling alcohol harm in communities. Alcohol harm is a social issue that we all have a stake in solving. There is more to do working with government and the alcohol industry. Above all however, personal responsibility is key.

“The harm that alcohol can do in our communities and the impact it has on policing is sometimes unrecognised or ignored. It shouldn’t be.”