Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Reducing the Strength campaign shortlisted for top award

An Ipswich campaign to reduce crime and support street drinkers has been shortlisted for a national award.

Reducing the Strength was launched in 2012 by Ipswich Borough Council, the Police, Suffolk County Council and the NHS. The East of England Co-operative Society joined the partnership soon afterwards and cleared super-strength alcoholic drinks from its own shelves.

The campaign's simple theme of encouraging retailers not to stock very strong lagers, beers and ciders has been so successful in cutting anti-social behaviour associated with street drinking that 80 other schemes across the county have followed Ipswich's lead.

Now, the Borough Council's pioneering role has been recognised by the LGC and its work has been shortlisted in the 2015 Awards Innovation category, with the overall winner to be announced in March.

This is good news indeed and a campaign that I totally supported because it was a voluntary based concept and I think people respond more positively to something that is not forced upon them. Instead with education and encouragement, retailers have found that this is not detrimental to their business and helps their town to be safer,

Ipswich has been at the forefront of many creative and successful ideas, including our campaign to help street workers find a new way of living more safely and our Best Bar None award instigated in 2010.


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