You're here: Home / What we do / Alcohol Alert / November 2014 / Public support for Leicester street drinking ban

Public support for Leicester street drinking ban

Hundreds of people across Leicester have backed plans for a city-wide ban on antisocial public drinking.

A series of public consultations took place across the summer asking whether people supported plans for the police to have stronger powers to tackle problem street drinking linked to antisocial behaviour.

Government legislation, known as Public Spaces Protection Orders, or PSPOs, gives police and police community support officers the power to tackle a wide range of antisocial behaviour problems linked to noise, alcohol and nuisance dogs.

Some controls on street drinking already exist in parts of the city centre, but the latest proposals would see those powers extended to cover the entire city under a PSPO.

In all, 630 people from the across the city took part in the public consultations. Of those, 87 per cent said street drinking was a problem in the city, and 77 per cent of people backed plans to bring in a city-wide ban.

Leicester City Council will now take the results of the consultation to the next meeting of the full council, on November 13, for a decision to be made.

Along with residents’ views, the consultations in Leicester also took into account information from city wardens, parks services, play services, cleansing teams and police neighbourhood officers.

About 73 per cent of people reported noise linked to street drinking as a problem, 70 per cent complained about littering, while 53 per cent said verbal abuse linked to street drinking was an issue.

Other problems linked to antisocial street drinking included intimidation, urination and vomiting, racism, begging and smashing glass.

Assistant City Mayor for Neighbourhood Services, Councillor Sarah Russell, said: “A very high number of people who took part in these consultations – 87 per cent – felt that street drinking and associated antisocial behaviour were real problems for them, and 77 per cent of people supported the idea of city-wide powers to tackle the issue.

“People have told us that they’re suffering with the noise, littering, intimidation, verbal abuse and other unpleasant behaviour linked to street drinking, and this PSPO will give the police greater powers to take action.”

The PSPO would cover anywhere within the city boundary, meaning it can be used to tackle drinking-related antisocial behaviour anywhere where problems are reported.

Officers can order people drinking in these areas to stop, hand over any alcohol or dispose of the alcohol, with people who fail to do so facing a spot fine of up to £100, or up to £1,000 if the case goes to court.