Intoxicated individuals who have “failed to take care of themselves” could face a hefty fine for an overnight stay until they sober up, it has emerged.
Police and Crime Commissioners across the country have backed the proposal of privately-run “drunk tanks” where society’s drinkers are kept overnight and made to pay £400 to do so – now that’s a hangover from hell!
But people being held in “welfare centres” run by a commercial company are common in parts of Europe and America and supporters argue it will help act as a deterrent to drinking excessively and save police officer’s time.
Of course, as the police force remains as bogged down with budget cuts, anything that can help officers spend more time fighting crime and helping the public should be enforced, right?
Beds Deputy Chief Constable, John Fletcher, said: “Police all too often have to care for people who have clearly failed to take care of themselves. They need to grow up and take responsibility.
“We’re not here to clean you up and drop you home, or mediate drunken arguments.”
And he has a point. Why should the limited amount of time and resources that policing has nowadays be wasted by people who have left themselves in a vulnerable position? But that’s exactly it; they are vulnerable. A one-size fits all solution to try and solve binge drinking with an extortionate fine doesn’t take into account the different scenarios for each person.
For one, it is a concerning thought that a privately-run business could have pound signs flashing before their eyes over the need to look after and protect a proportion of the public who have got themselves into a predicament.
I’m not condoning their behaviour, far from it, but surely a service to ensure they get home safe and are then visited by the police the following morning would be a better service.
Adrian Lee, the Association of Chief Police Officers’ lead on tackling alcohol problems, says offenders would be arrested, then go to a welfare centre and police would deal with the criminality of their behaviour when sober.