Should police be given powers to seize alcohol from street drinkers in Bournemouth? (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Should police be given powers to seize alcohol from street drinkers in Bournemouth?
POLICE officers could have the power to seize alcohol from street drinkers across Bournemouth by next summer, if the plans win public approval.
Proposals to scrap the current system of separate alcohol enforcement zones, and replace them with a Designated Public Places Order covering the entire borough, won approval from cabinet members and will now go to consultation.
Councillors believe the plans will prove popular with the public who want to see a crackdown on antisocial street drinking.
Cllr David Smith, cabinet member for planning and environment, said: “This doesn’t mean that people can’t drink in public, in parks or on the beaches.
“It just means that if they are drinking in an antisocial manner, the police will have the power to remove that alcohol.
“They may feel they need to use this power with yobs or drunks”.
But Talbot and Branksome Woods Cllr Stephen Chappell said he was not convinced this move was justified.
“It’s sending out the wrong message,” he said. “I find that the justification in the report is very weak.”
This prompted East Cliff and Springbourne Cllr Anne Filer to remark: “This is one of the problems that incenses a lot of people throughout the town.
“Possibly not in the leafy suburbs of Talbot Woods but in other areas of the town, it does.
“The street drinkers might not be doing any overt damage but they do damage to the image of the town.”
And Central ward councillor Bob Chapman agreed: “There is a sense of urgency over this.
“We need this in place for the holiday season next year.”
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