We Love Stoke Newington is for residents living in the local area providing updates about local meetings, campaigns and useful information. This site is maintained by your local Labour team for Stoke Newington.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

New powers to target street drinkers

On Monday, a Hackney wide "Public Place Order" was approved at the Council.

This has been wrongly described as a public drinking ban - which it isn't. It gives the police powers, across the borough, to confiscate and/or dispose of alcohol from people who are causing anti-social behaviour.

In the other parts of the borough where these powers have been in place, residents have reported that these powers work and have improved their quality of life.

At the end of last year, when there were big issues with street drinking in Kynaston Gardens, having these powers in place would have helped the Police to deal with the problem more quickly.

A bit more information about the Public Places Order:
  • this isn't a ban on public drinking. The police will not routinely stop people walking down the street, or sitting in one of Hackney's parks having a picnic and confiscate their alcohol.

  • the police will use the powers to direct resources to areas where there is alcohol-related ASB. So this may be at the request of local residents through the Community Advisory Panels, or it could be through the formal police tasking meeting which decides on how the police will spend their time.

  • there will be a 6 month review of the powers, and then an annual review thereafter. If the problems of alcohol related ASB have lessened greatly and the powers aren't needed, then the council can rescind the order.

  • anyone who the police stop and ask to cease drinking, or confiscate alcohol, will be issued with a form saying that they have been stopped. We're the only borough which has asked for this reassurance, so that there is a separate source of monitoring the use of the powers.

  • it allows for a speedy and proportionate response to the problems. The existing orders take months to put in place and prevent a quick response that may be all that is needed.

  • these powers will be used in conjunction with the Drug and Alcohol Team going out to ensure that people have access to treatment, so that there is the support in place for those who suffer from problem drinking.

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