Agenda Item No.
THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL
CABINET: 5TH NOVEMBER, 2012
REFERENCE FROM SCRUTINY COMMITTEE (HOUSING AND PUBLIC PROTECTION): 10TH OCTOBER, 2012
" DRAFT ALCOHOL STRATEGY 2012 – 15 (DDS) –
The draft Strategy had been designed to meet the needs of the population of the County and aimed to build on current capacity for the service by developing skills amongst the workforce at Youth Service and Health Service level to do with presenting alcohol related issues. The Strategy looked to work across partnerships to tackle and prevent alcohol related harm, building on the foundations laid by the Cadoxton House project in terms of collaborative working.
It was noted that the Strategy included the following main themes, as well as the mechanisms that would aid delivery in the following areas:
· education and prevention
· harm to the individual
· harm to the community.
Within a Vale of Glamorgan context, alcohol remained the highest source of referrals into substance misuse services across the County with 577 referrals during 2011/12. In addition, the Vale of Glamorgan Young Person’s Consultation Report highlighted that nearly all young people in the Vale of Glamorgan had tried alcohol, with the typical age for the first use of alcohol being 12 years old and with at least a quarter moving towards a pattern of weekly alcohol consumption. It was noted that alcohol was an aggravating factor in 11% of all recorded crime between April and November 2011 and 9% of anti social behaviour. In the Vale of Glamorgan, 37% (352) of all recorded and criminal violent offences between the same period were alcohol related.
An extended consultation exercise had recently been concluded with appropriate feedback received. The consultation feedback would be used to inform the final version of the Strategy prior to its formal publication. The Strategy would provide a work plan for the forthcoming three years for the Safer Vale Partnership.
The Safer Vale Manager indicated that action undertaken in meeting the objectives of the Strategy would be reported to the Vale of Glamorgan Local Service Board and to the Scrutiny Committee in the future. Oversight of the Strategy in itself would be managed by the Area Planning Board for Substance Misuse for Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan.
In response to a question from Councillor Bertin in regard to raising awareness of issues relating to alcohol abuse, the Safer Vale Manager confirmed that concentrated campaigns targeted at schools would be undertaken on a periodic basis. In addition, she also confirmed that arrangements were in hand to commission an alcohol and misuse service for younger people in the Vale of Glamorgan, which currently did exist. It was anticipated that this service, once commissioned, would oversee raising awareness on a joint basis and in collaboration with public health services. She also confirmed that text messaging campaigns would continue to be undertaken, including the use of other social media tools.
In commenting on the document itself, Councillor Drysdale reiterated his comments made at the last meeting of the Committee regarding the inclusion of objectives within strategies which were not outcome based. He considered that certain objectives contained within the Strategy were not assessing the impact of the Strategy within the community. He referred specifically to the objective contained within the Strategy which related to “develop and promote the availability of community detoxification packages of care” with the associated outcome which related to “increase volume of community detoxifications completed”. He expressed concern that this objective and outcome could not be appropriately measured and expressed concern that any increase in the availability of such packages should be of concern to the Committee. In response, the Safer Vale Manager indicated that available data suggested that there was a need within the community to increase such packages to address public health issues.
Having regard to the above and to the contents of the draft Alcohol Strategy, it was
(1) T H A T the draft Alcohol Strategy for 2012-15 be endorsed and referred to Cabinet for approval.
(2) T H A T the Scrutiny Committee receive regular updates on progress of work against the Strategy within future Community Safety reports.
Reasons for recommendations
(1) To obtain the Cabinet’s approval for the introduction of the proposed Alcohol Strategy 2012-15.
(2) To enable the Scrutiny Committee to monitor and review the implementation of the Alcohol Strategy for 2012-15."
Attached as Appendix - Report to Scrutiny Committee (Housing and Public Protection): 10th October, 2012