The SPF’s views on matters which affect police officers and the Police Service of Scotland.


13th March, 2014
Dealing with Drunks – It’s what we do

Dealing with Drunks


It is a sad fact that too many citizens in Scotland have an unhealthy relationship with alcohol. This often spills over into violence and disorder in homes, on our streets, and in pubs and clubs. Now it would be unfair to say that everyone who drinks causes the police problems for many do not. There are however a sizable minority who do. Imagine if you will a busy pub with lots of people having a good time, I’m sure we have all been in pubs where this is simply part of the routine. Imagine how the noise increases as the pub fills and alcohol flows, imagine how the laughs get louder as even the worst of jokes are met with roaring approval and imagine how the voices raise over the most innocuous of disagreements.

Alcohol help many people have a good time but unfortunately for many others, alcohol ruins lives and is anything other than enjoyable. Bad people will always do bad things but how many good people do you know who change with alcohol. How many of these people do you end up talking about the next day or when they are not there? How many of these people do you dread meeting when you are out? These are the people we deal with and sadly many of our involvements come on the back of their being a victim of crime there also. An assault, a breach of the peace, a serious road accident, a rape – the list is endless. Alcohol is often used as the reason but is never an excuse.

Dealing with drunks – it’s what we do. We put ourselves in between the victims and the aggressors; we are the safety net between the “bad” and the “good”.

We hear the drunken reasoning, we hear “my friend is a lawyer”, we hear the helpful advice on how to “catch real criminals” and we take it all in our stride whilst being reminded who it is that “pays our wages”. We hear and deal with all this whilst actually getting on with our job.

We comfort victims, many of whom have helpful but often over emotional well-meaning friends giving bad advice; and against all these pressures we make decisions and gather evidence to try to make sure no victim is left helpless and no suspect is untraced.

Theses scenario in this film could be from any pub on any high street on any evening or any day of the week. It is a brilliant illustration of the many competing priorities police officers face with even the most routine of calls and how these priorities change without a seconds warning.

We want to do our jobs, we want to keep bad people off the streets, but most of all we want you not to be a victim of crime or commit a drunken induced crime because for the police your safety is our priority #Itswhatwedo


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