People who repeatedly commit alcohol-related crime will be forced to wear ankle tags that monitor if they are still drinking, under a year-long pilot scheme.So, rampant alcoholics will be included?
Well, no. Of course not:
Offenders will be screened before being tagged, and the scheme will not be used on people who are alcohol-dependent and require specialist support.So…what’s the point? Given that these are the most problematic? Are we going to simply use these tags on violent chavs who have just happened to have had a few shandies instead?
Oh. Right. It seems we are...
The scheme, being introduced by the mayor of London, Boris Johnson, builds on a similar scheme in the US and aims to reduce alcohol-related reoffending, ease pressure on the police and courts, and make streets safer.
Alcohol-related crime is estimated to cost the UK between £8bn and £13bn every year, while 40% of accident and emergency attendances are linked to alcohol misuse. Johnson said: "'Alcohol-fuelled criminal behaviour is a real scourge on our high streets, deterring law-abiding citizens from enjoying our great city, especially at night, placing massive strain on frontline services, whilst costing businesses and the taxpayer billions of pounds.
"I pledged to tackle this booze culture by making the case to government for new powers to allow mandatory alcohol testing as an additional enforcement option for the courts.
"This is an approach that has seen impressive results in the US, steering binge drinkers away from repeated criminal behaviour, and I am pleased we can now launch a pilot scheme in London."I’m unconvinced. Deeply unconvinced.