Kent launches Community Alcohol Partnership

Kent is following in the footsteps of St Neots in Cambridgeshire with the launch of a new Community Alcohol Partnership designed to tackle under-age drinking.

Three areas of the county will introduce the Kent CAP, which involves retailers, the police, health authorities and the county council working together.

Three target areas have been selected to pilot the scheme before it is rolled out across the county: Canterbury city centre, an urban estate in Thanet, and Edenbridge.

The Retail of Alcohol Standards Group, which represents leading players in the off-trade, has published a “toolkit” designed to help front-line practitioners develop Community Alcohol Partnerships in their own area. The toolkit has a foreword by Home Office minister Alan Campbell, endorsing the scheme.

The guide includes model letters, leaflets and case studies that can be adapted for use by local CAPs to help them introduce partnership working in a cost effective way and ensure support across the community.

Nick Grant, chairman of RASG, said: “Experience shows that collaboration can help tackle under-age drinking and KCAP takes it to the next level, involving local health authorities for the first time to address the health impact of alcohol consumption by young people. We’re delighted to be involved in this partnership and look forward to working together to curb underage alcohol sales and possession.”

Mike Fuller, Kent Police Chief Constable, added: “We know that in Kent, in the last financial year, 6,046 people were arrested for alcohol-related offences and over 400 of these were young people.

“I am hopeful that by working with our key partners, using not only enforcement but also preventative activity, we can make a positive step towards a change in young people’s attitudes towards binge-drinking, and therefore, an improvement in behaviour and a reduction in disorder incidents within our communities.”

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