Minister: I'll work for licensee justice

By John Harrington

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: National pubwatch, Home office, Alan campbell

Campbell: solution-focused
Campbell: solution-focused
A Government minister has promised to work with National Pubwatch on its Court not Caution campaign.

A Government minister has promised to work with National Pubwatch to "find a solution to the problem" of people who attack licensees and pub staff not facing court.

The Morning Advertiser has learnt that several MPs have written to the Home Office urging action in support of National Pubwatch's Court Not Caution campaign.

Home Office minister Alan Campbell has replied saying: "I would like to reassure you that the Government takes the issue of attacks on bar staff extremely seriously.

"Officials from the Alcohol Strategy Unit in the Home Office have met Steve Baker, National Pubwatch chairman, to discuss this campaign and will be working closely with him to find a solution to this problem."

So far 84 MPs have put their name to the Early Day Motion petition from Nigel Evans MP, National Pubwatch's president, backing Court Not Caution.

Meanwhile, Baker is organising meetings with the Conservative Shadow Justice Department and has written to Association of Chief Police Officers lead on licensing Simon O'Brien, urging support for the campaign.

He has also spoken to the British Transport Police about the campaign. The BTP have been successful in lobbying the Crown Prosecution Service to take attacks on railway staff more seriously.

Baker wants licensees and pub staff to be treated in a similar way to railway workers because they are also helping to protect people and perform a service to the public.

Baker said: "I think that there is an acceptance from the police and Home Office that they would prefer to see people drinking in well regulated pubs and clubs rather than say in the street.

"Licensees hold the key to preventing many problems associated with underage drinking and drunkenness. It's important that their role is supported when they act responsibly."

Back the campaign

More than 730 people have signed the petition to the Prime Minister calling for thugs who attack hosts and pub staff to face court.

Click here​ to add your name.

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