Europe: British Police Demand Bar Patrons Submit to Drug Tests 5/19/06

Drug War Chronicle, recent top items

more...

recent blog posts "In the Trenches" activist feed

SUBSCRIBE TODAY!!!


http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/436/pubtests.shtml

Police in Sussex are broadening a program that requires people wishing to enter pubs to submit to on-the-spot drug tests. They also say they will detain anyone who refuses to take a drug test. The tests will be conducted randomly at selected establishments, police added.

Sussex police last year purchased an ion tracker device, which works by analyzing a swab taken from a person's hand for the presence of a controlled substance. Results are available within 10 seconds.

The program is already underway, said Chris Ball, acting chief inspector for Mid Sussex. "We have been running pilot operations in the three towns of Mid Sussex -- Burgess Hill, Haywards Heath and East Grinstead -- since December 2005 and the reaction of the customers has been positive. We have now reviewed the way we will carry out the operations in future, and I want to reassure the licensees that my aim is to work with them and not against them. It's with this co-operation that we will succeed in making the towns even safer and combat the use of drugs."

Not surprisingly, few are buying Ball's cheery words. Pub owners' groups and civil libertarians are crying foul. "These plans are out of all proportion and to involve the trade in such an initiative without some form of national policy or legislation is a step too far," legal analyst Peter Coulson told the Morning Advertiser. "It places licensees between a rock and a hard place in terms of customers and the police, but I am particularly concerned about the queue drop-out scenario. People may wish to drop out of a queue on principle, but that shouldn't raise suspicion of drug carrying and it smacks of guilty until proved innocent," he said.

And while Ball said bar customers had reacted positively, pub owners in Sussex scoffed. "I can see this being exceedingly unpopular with any law-abiding citizen," said one pub owner from Lewes. "Customers will simply not turn up at a pub if they suspect they are going to have to go through this sort of testing. We want to work with the police in the fight against drugs, but we have to balance this with the effect that swab testing might have on business. I have grave concerns about the implications for my license and livelihood."

-- END --
Link to Drug War Facts
Please make a generous donation to support Drug War Chronicle in 2007!          

PERMISSION to reprint or redistribute any or all of the contents of Drug War Chronicle (formerly The Week Online with DRCNet is hereby granted. We ask that any use of these materials include proper credit and, where appropriate, a link to one or more of our web sites. If your publication customarily pays for publication, DRCNet requests checks payable to the organization. If your publication does not pay for materials, you are free to use the materials gratis. In all cases, we request notification for our records, including physical copies where material has appeared in print. Contact: StoptheDrugWar.org: the Drug Reform Coordination Network, P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 293-8340 (voice), (202) 293-8344 (fax), e-mail [email protected]. Thank you.

Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of the DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

Issue #436 -- 5/19/06

Drug War Chronicle, recent top items

more...

recent blog posts "In the Trenches" activist feed

SUBSCRIBE TODAY!!!

Editorial: Border Fears | Feature: Dramatic Death Toll in Sao Paulo as Drug Gangs, Police Clash | Feature: New Jersey Medical Marijuana Bill to Get Hearing | Feature: Marijuana Reform Emerges in Ireland | DRCNet Book Review: "Between Two Pages: Children of Substance," by Susan Hubenthal and GriefNet Parents (2003, 1st Books, $22.95, pb.) | Offer and Appeal: Important New Legalization Video and Drug War Facts Book Available | Feedback: Do You Read Drug War Chronicle? | Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories | Search and Seizure: Bush Nominees Could Provide Swing Votes in Supreme Court Search Warrant Case | Europe: British Police Demand Bar Patrons Submit to Drug Tests | Southwest Asia: US Counter-Drug Contractor Killed as Afghan Fighting Intensifies | Australia: Lone South Australia Democrat MP Even Lonelier -- But Unbowed -- After Coming to Ecstasy's Defense | Australia: Health Minister Says Marijuana as Dangerous as Heroin -- Calls for National Toughening of Laws | Web Scan: Shipping Off Hawaiian Women Prisoners, Two Very Different District Attorneys, Drug Truth Network | Weekly: This Week in History | Job Opportunities: Syringe Exchange Program Coordinator and Specialist, Harm Reduction Coalition, Oakland, California | Job Opportunity: Program Manager, Criminal Justice Policy Foundation, Washington, DC | Job Opportunity: Program Coordinator, Sensible Colorado, Denver/Boulder | Weekly: The Reformer's Calendar

Mail this article to a friend
Send us feedback on this article
This issue -- main page
This issue -- single-file printer version
Drug War Chronicle -- main page
Chronicle archives
Subscribe now!
Out from the Shadows HEA Drug Provision Drug War Chronicle Perry Fund DRCNet en EspaŮol Speakeasy Blogs About Us Home
Why Legalization? NJ Racial Profiling Archive Subscribe Donate DRCNet em PortuguÍs Latest News Drug Library Search
special friends links: SSDP - Flex Your Rights - IAL - Drug War Facts

StoptheDrugWar.org: the Drug Reform Coordination Network (DRCNet)
1623 Connecticut Ave., NW, 3rd Floor, Washington DC 20009 Phone (202) 293-8340 Fax (202) 293-8344 [email protected]