The Scottish Alcohol Needs Assessment 2009 revealed that 31% of Fife’s adult population drink harmfully or hazardously, this equates to 94,065. This figure is more than the capacity at T in the Park and almost doubles the capacity at Hampden Stadium.   The Scottish Health Survey 2010 showed that excessive weekly alcohol consumption, and the prevalence of drunkenness was highest in both men and women aged 16-25.  The volume of alcohol consumed by this age group is far higher than in England, men aged 25-34 also have similar rates of binge drinking (of 8 units and above).

The Alcohol Diversion Scheme is not aimed at the habitual criminal but focuses on those persons who through binge drinking commit low-level antisocial behaviour crimes. It contributes to the Governments objectives of Healthier and Safer & Stronger.   The scheme not only improves health & quality of life but also tackles the misuse of alcohol, the associated violence that can go with it and improves community and personal safety.

The Alcohol Diversion Scheme is an early and effective intervention driven by the Anti Social Behaviour etc (Scotland) Act 2004.  Where an individual gets a Fixed Penalty Notice for an offence, which was influenced by alcohol they are offered a chance to waive the £40 fine if they attend and complete an alcohol awareness session delivered by Fife Alcohol Support Service.

The scheme reduces a binge drinker’s chance of becoming a future victim or offender in the criminal justice system, raises awareness of alcohol and its effect on the person and their wellbeing, and the wider community. This is an innovative and creative scheme. It has examined how we can tackle a problem using an existing framework and adapting it. Using a carrot and stick approach individuals involved in binge drinking are provided with positive ways to make small changes to their drinking behaviour to not only improve their health but to keep them and the community safer. It reaches primarily, but not exclusively, males aged 16-25 who binge drink who without this scheme would have no recourse to this type of input.

Download the application form: TII08 Fife Alcohol Diversion Scheme