This from yesterday's Observer (UK) (http://observer.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,1805429,00.html) :
Drink offenders may face compulsory rehab
Sunday June 25, 2006
Drinkers who commit violent crimes could be forced to undergo rehab treatment, the Home Secretary suggested yesterday amid warnings from senior police officers about the impact of relaxing drinking laws.
John Reid said he was considering whether the fast-tracking of drug addicts into detox to stop them reoffending could be extended to those who offended when drunk. On a visit to police on night duty in Soho he was told by Commander Chris Allison, the Association of Chief Police Officers spokesman on licensing, that he still had 'concerns' about the relaxation in licensing laws.
Reid said there was no evidence that the change had increased drink-related crime as some had predicted, but that he was considering ways of tackling the causes of violence, including drinking. He endorsed schemes to stop addicts reoffending to get money for drugs, and added: 'We don't at the moment have anything similar to that on alcohol but if the drugs intervention proves worthwhile, then we can look at the other driver of violent crime.' About 40 per cent of crime is thought to be alcohol-related: the arrest of 122 British fans in Germany yesterday drew attention back to British drinking.
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