The night-time economy in Norwich, Great Yarmouth and Kings Lynn wanted to improve safety for customers and other people using their evening venues including pubs and clubs.
They commissioned an enhanced communication system that would enable them to provide a platform for the exchange of information between licensed premises and other stakeholders in the night time economy that would assist in the prevention and detection of crime. They also recognised that individuals who were experiencing problems with alcohol also needed support and wanted to provide a means for individuals to exclude themselves from purchasing or consuming alcohol in their premises.
The Count Me Out Alcohol Harm Reduction Partnership was the first scheme of its kind in the UK. There are agreed rules around behaviour that customers are expected to abide by and if a customer breaks one of those rules they will be served with a ‘red banning card’ and excluded from all Count Me Out members’ premises within the district for 6 months.
Individuals are also able to voluntarily ban or self exclude themselves which presents a unique opportunity for those seeking help. This might be an underage person who is getting into trouble because of alcohol or it could be someone who has a problem with drink. Self Exclusion is a voluntary agreement that allows an individual to exclude themselves from all Count Me Out members’ premises for a period of at least 6 months.
Self Exclusion could be used as part of an intervention programme and we are looking into it being used as part of the Conditional Caution process. The partnership is enabling those working within the night time economy to support each other in making a night out a safer experience for all, as well as supporting individuals who choose to exclude themselves in order to improve their quality of life.