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Hereford Drunks' 'Recovery Centre' To Open


Roger
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If I remember correctly, George Armstrong mentioned this project a few weeks back.

 

Anything that takes some of the strain away from ambulance crews and A and E is to be welcomed.

 

I am sure the volunteers/ staff involved will have had basic first aid training. I expect most of them have a good deal of common sense, and will know if they do need to call for medical support.

 

It will be interesting to hear what effect this has.

 

Good luck to all who are involved! 

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It is, Two Wheels. I also note it is called "Emilia's Place", after Rev. John Venns sister.

 

I wonder if those who benefit from this project, could be pressed into making a financial contribution ........those chuggers are pretty adept at getting direct debits set up!

 

This could give them a base to work from, with a captive audience to hustle!

 

 

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I'm sure that Emelia and her brother John would be horrified to see our late night City. Gaol Street was formerly known as Grope Lane, and the gaol itself was built by Johnson, a contemporary and colleague of John Venn and who built many of his buildings (and has his own almshouses in the City - Johnson's Hospital).

 

Perhaps the likes of Play and other late night venues could be asked to make a contribution.

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Little info on the HT link about how this will deliver/work ... How do people get there? Is it the self reporting homeless drunks' who want somewhere warm to hang out? Or some vulnerable drunk woman escorted there by a 'street pastor' ... 

 

Too little info on the HT story to form an opinion really ... 

 

I'd also add that I hope any of these 'volunteers' are subject to very enhanced 'CRB' type checks ... As we all know what happened in the Jimmy Savile situation ... 

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My understanding is that although they are Christian - no "preaching" is made, given or offered by them. 

 

They simply help people who are in distress. They seem to get good feedback and thanks for their work on facebook. 

Ive seen them out at night and they just wonder around looking for people who are in distress or vulnerable and offer assistance.

 

Good Samaritans would be a good way to describe them, and, if they can keep the silly issues out of A&E I for one am all for it! 

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I did mention this initiative a while back, and I think it might well be a national first for the Street Pastor movement.

My understanding is that all Pastors are trained to high standard, including street triage and first aid.

I don't believe they evangelise either - but just do good things, as their faith demands of them.

I believe this centres around the night time crowd who get into difficulties, rather than rough sleeping street drinkers.

I also understand that the pubs and clubs support the Pastors, with profits from their award winning HAND Ban re-education scheme being directed that way.

If we put aside our cynicism and/or scepticism for a minute...

What's not to like about good people trying to make things better?

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From Wilkpedia .

 

It's a sad reflection on the modern drinking culture - they should be thankful that the Street Pastors are now set up in Hereford.

 

 

Street Pastors was founded in Brixton, south London, UK in 2003 by Rev. Les Isaac. It was based on a model from Jamaica in which individual churches joined together to take their values out onto the streets.[4][12] Street Pastors is an initiative of the Ascension Trust, a registered charity established in 1993. The initial activities of street pastors in areas such as Lewisham and Hackney focussed mainly on confronting gang culture and the use of knives and guns. As Street Pastors started to operate in other areas of the UK, the initiative responded to other local issues, including anti-social behavior and drunkenness.[13]

 

By 2008 there were Street Pastors groups in 70 locations, with another 50 being established.[12] As of November 2011 the official website states that there are over 150 active groups.[1]

 

In 2010 Ascension Trust devolved responsibility to oversee Street Pastors in Scotland to Ascension Trust (Scotland), a Scottish registered charity which has an office in Perth, and whose first chairman is former police officer Sandy Scrimgeour.[14][15]

 

In 2010 Michael Frost and others established the first Australian group in Manly, New South Wales.

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The facts are straightforward here. The folk get unbelievably drunk in town at certain times and the 'fallout' is dealt with by certain measures being put in place. 

 

Chip/kebab shops are shut at 1.30AM and now a 'volunteer' drying out centre is opening. 

 

I know for a fact that licensees generally are really trying their best to be as responsible as they can but the drunks keep getting served till they are either falling over or fighting. 

 

Should more be done to prevent the need for this drying out place to be there at all? 

 

Drunks routinely served --- Link (2014 one) is a general one and not Hereford ... 

 

I gather just 10 people were prosecuted last year for serving drunks ... The DM says it was 3 in 2010 ... I do know that fixed penalties can be issued for this (and undoubtedly have been) but that probably just hits the barman/barmaid in the pocket. 

 

Seems to me that the emphasis is mopping up the fallout on the cheap and not tackling the underlying cause. Probably because the cash ran out years ago ... 

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I would agree with that, Roger. Serving folks who have already had a skinful is irresponsible, and adds to an already growing problem.

 

Folks have to be made to take personal responsibility as well. Getting sloshed on cheap supermarket alcohol before even stepping out of the front door doesn't help matters.

 

The question is.....what approach will work best?

 

An increase in the price of alcohol?

 

A fine system for those who repeatedly abuse the 999 A and E service??

 

Stricter regulation/ harsher penalties for those premises which serve the already inebriated?

 

Naming and shaming???

 

I don't know.

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Folks have to be made to take personal responsibility as well. Getting sloshed on cheap supermarket alcohol before even stepping out of the front door doesn't help matters.

 

Red herring that one ... Pre-loading is a well known way to get a cheap booze fix ... Adults who pre-load then go to the pub ... Where the service happens .. 

 

The area that the Council won't touch appears to be serving drunks in the pubs/clubs (And I admit that is VERY hard/costly/risky) ... Easier to sting a supermarket for an underage sale to tick a box ... 

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Under-age sales operations are costly and have to be 'intelligence lead' meaning visits should not be random. The are run/organised by Trading Standards with the police assisting. Pubs and clubs have been targeted before with a number of failures. Those who fail do get revisited and if they fail again...prosecution and licensing review follow.

The important factor when doing these operations is to ensure the safety of the young person who try to buy alcohol (they are scripted to be honest if asked their age or whether they have any ID.

The triage being set up is a massive plus for this county. Its a place of safety for the drunken and emotional few who need help when out and about. It will reduce demand on the emergency services - especially A&E and the ambulance service. Street Pastors are medically trained to a high standard. So embrace and support the concept. .

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Absolutely Bilbobobby!

 

It will be very interesting to compare last years festive season statistics, with this years. It's always good  to have some evidence based figures to back up the good work which is being done.

 

Perhaps if the numbers back up the hope that this scheme will have a positive impact, and reduces the huge demand for 999 and A and E , continued funding for this may come from partner services.

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Dippy threw in a question. " An increase in the price of alcohol? " sure that I read somewhere today that either Scotland or N Ireland were going to consider this .

 

I do not believe that will make any difference to the amount of alcohol irresponsibility drunk - however it will increase the Duty / VAT we pay to the Govt of the day .

 

Perhaps drunks who attend A and E for treatment for their drunkeness should have to pay a FIxed Penalty Fine or similar . Drunkeness is self inflected for which there is none or very little excuse .

 

The NHS charge drivers of motor vehicles ( fixed rate ) for the treatment of pedestrians that their vehicle collides with - even though the pedestrian might be 100% to blame , passengers in the vehicle etc involved in Road Accudents / Collision - that's what Motor Vehicle Insurance is for .

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Yes Ubique,I also mentioned the possibility of some sort of fine system.

 

If an ambulance/A and E is required, and the reason is purely down to the amount of alcohol consumed, and no other  factor, then maybe a short, sharp shock which hits the pocket, might make those repeat weekend offenders think a tad more carefully!!

 

Getting rat arsed, to the point of requiring emergency assistance, is not making best use of our already overstretched frontline resources!

 

There are many folks who have issues with alcohol, but it is the binge drinking weekend warriors who are the frequent abusers of our emergency services.

 

A line needs to be drawn between what is an accident, what is an emergency and what is a self inflicted drunken stupor which could so easily have been avoided, if a little self restraint could be shown by individuals!

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Yes, but if a fine follows a call regarding a genuine medical emergency, then people who are subject of a medical emergency might not get medical assistance and tragedy may ensue. Being very drunk can be a medical emergency, per se. So let's let the SPs deal with those who inadvertently get themselves into a bit of a state, who aren't drunk enough to be hospitalised or disorderly enough to be arrested. You know it makes sense...

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(Hence the "no other factor" bit!)

 

Hi George, good as always to hear your thoughts,

 

Folks can and will always call ambulances when they need help - the point is.......sometimes they need to be made aware that the problem they have is actually of their own making!

 

Perhaps once they have sobered up, and the night on the tiles ends up costing them an extra £100......they might think more carefully before hitting the sherry next time!

 

Believe me when I say, there are well know faces on the circuit, who do this time and time again - they are not addicts,(whose needs are far more complex) they are basically young(ish) and foolish, "weekend warriors" as perhaps we all were once. The difference being that these days it seems to be the norm to consider using ambulances as a taxi service. I am only suggesting that it would perhaps be an idea to try to instil some sense of personal responsibility in them. Modifying their behaviour, if you like!

 

I am not saying this is the answer.....it's just a suggestion - I wholeheartedly back this project, I just feel that aiming to make folks take responsibility for their actions could and perhaps should, be a part of that.

 

Just my thoughts....!!!!

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I notice that the powers that can without difficulty suppress the likes of John McPhee are markedly absent in the early hours of Fridays and Saturdays when the pubs and clubs disgorge in their hundreds the habitual binge drinkers onto our streets.

Maybe the problems that thus result are best left to our street pastors, their church coffee, detox kitchens and mattresses.

 

 

Quote from a letter on the HT website ... 

 

Hereford Times

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If you get swept up by the cops for stuff there is the 50 foot long list of questions before they accept you into the block... usual drugs/suicide risk questions ... a whole list ... What is the regime for this makeshift Pastor Centre ? Have they got computer records? Very little info on this in the Media ... The cops are backing it tho as a local cop was in the paper enthusing over it ... In a pic ... 

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My feelings are, that this is a great scheme - I honestly feel it will make a real difference, and I wish them all the luck and love in the world.

 

What I keep banging on about - perhaps it's my age! - is the fact that it happens again and again and again!!

 

The folks who have addiction problems will always have my sympathy and support - their lives and issues are incredibly complex.

 

My gripe, if you like, are the ones who regularly go out, and do not view the fact that they get so drunk they can be a problem/ nuisance or even danger to themselves.....or others, as an issue.

 

They need a wake up call, that it is NOT acceptable! And it isn't doing them, as individuals, any good either!

 

Campaigns about binge drinking and the like seem to fall on deaf ears.....perhaps a fine might make them think twice??

 

That said.....I would help anybody who needed it, regardless of circumstances! But I am a soft touch!

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Campaigns about binge drinking and the like seem to fall on deaf ears....

 

A drunk/binge drinker has got served by the premises ... Who are apparently complying with the Licensing Objectives that everyone trots out ... 

 

This is all a big con in my view ... 

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If you get swept up by the cops for stuff there is the 50 foot long list of questions before they accept you into the block... usual drugs/suicide risk questions ... a whole list ... What is the regime for this makeshift Pastor Centre ? Have they got computer records? Very little info on this in the Media ... The cops are backing it tho as a local cop was in the paper enthusing over it ... In a pic ...

 

Roger,

Why don't you get in touch with your former colleagues and/or the Street Pastors to find out the answers to your rhetorical questions?

My understanding is that this project is supported by Health and the WMAS. I believe that there are pre-agreed protocols and practices between the Project and there handling of inebriated & vulnerable people is all based on pre-established best practice triage principles.

Who knows, they might offer to show you around their facility?

If you don't want to do it, maybe this is a job for Ubique...

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