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Community Alcohol Partnerships reduce underage drinking-related crime

Published:  20 November, 2015

Community Alcohol Partnership (CAP) schemes have decreased alcohol-related crime among young people in many participating communities across the UK, according to a new report published this week called Progress through Partnership: Creating Safer Communities.

CAP is funded in three-year funding cycles. In 2015 received £328,000 from 17 companies including Aldi, Asda, Brown-Forman, Conviviality Retail, Molson Coors, Diageo, M&S, Lidl, Sainsburys, Morrisons, and Waitrose.

CAP schemes were set up to help communities prevent youth and underage drinking and the resulting harm to local communities, according to statement in the report from the chairman Derek Lewis.

The growing number of schemes have successfully contributed to combating the issues, while also involving all the stakeholders within local communities in supporting the programmes.

Lewis said: "The number of CAPS has grown from 57 at the beginning of 2014 to 88 currently, with 20 more expected to be launched in the foreseeable future.

"While the goals and the specific action programmes are tailored to the problems and needs of the local communities in which they operate, the principle of bringing together all of the agencies and organisations that can ensure effective execution underpins them all - be they police, trading standards, alcohol retailers, youth services, schools, local charities, residents' associations and health networks."

According to the report, some areas like Gateshead South CAP are reporting a 50% decrease in youth alcohol-related crime, while the Great Yarmouth CAP in Norfolk has reported a 62% fall.

"I welcome the reduction in alcohol-related youth anti-social behaviour," said Mike Penning, minister of state for policing, criminal justice and victims.

"The CAP model has promoted effective and innovative partnership work between enforcement agencies, businesses and local community groups and has clearly played an important part in this.

"I would encourage every area with evidence of alcohol-related youth crime to give serious consideration to setting up a CAP to reduce crime and build safer neighbourhoods."

Lewis said: "This report shows unequivocally that CAPs do the job they set out to do."