Sussex

Awareness courses offered to East Sussex alcohol offenders

People who commit alcohol-related crimes in East Sussex are being offered awareness courses designed to cut their drinking.

The new scheme is aimed at people committing criminal damage, drunk and disorderly behaviour, minor assaults and public order offences.

People who go on the courses get a £40 fixed penalty notice instead of the £90 standard penalty.

They are currently being run in Eastbourne and Hastings.

Local services

Sussex Police Insp Rosie Ross said the scheme, run with East Sussex charity Action for Change, was a similar idea to speed awareness courses for drivers caught speeding.

"It's been trialled in other areas of the country and we decided to use our local services and local community links," she said.

"It is about addressing people's behaviour and trying to get a long-term solution. This isn't suitable for people who commit serious crimes - they need to go through the courts system."

The standard fixed penalty for alcohol-related offences goes up from £80 to £90 on Monday.

Under the scheme a crime will still be recorded as committed by people who go on the course.

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