Mobile phone technology used to tackle alcohol related trouble in Newton Aycliffe (From The Advertiser Series)
Send us your pictures, video, news and views by texting NORTHERN ECHO to 80360 or email us
Initiative to tackle underage drinking and arson in Newton Aycliffe
A TOWN police team has turned to modern technology in a bid to tackle alcohol-fuelled anti social behaviour and arson.
Officers in Newton Aycliffe want to encourage young people to think about the consequences of underage drinking and poor behaviour which have become a problem in parts of the town.
Around 120 QR, or quick response, codes have been displayed on trees, lampposts, fences and community centres where young people often congregate.
It is hoped that youngsters will be curious and use their mobile phones to scan the codes which send a two-minute video message to their device.
The messages are designed to educate them about the risks of underage drinking, such as the negative impact it could have on their studies and health, the impact on the wider community and the dangerous consequences of arson.
Woodham PCSO Amy Jorgeson (CORRECT) said: “Dealing with anti social behaviour is a priority in nearly all parts of the town.
“Almost ten per cent of calls from my beat are about alcohol fuelled anti social behaviour in Woodham Park and there has been an increase in drink-related arson, play equipment has been damaged and glass bottles left in play areas.
“We can tell young people a thousand times not to do something, but until they think for themselves about the consequences of their actions it doesn’t make much difference.
“We hope these messages on their phones will encourage them to make the right choices.”
The beat team worked alongside 4real- County Durham Children and Young People’s Drug and Alcohol Service, Durham Alcohol Harm Reducstion Unit, County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service and schools in the area to organise the scheme.
Greenfield Community College pupils Nicole Todd, 13, and Francesca Moody, 15, said seeing the codes around the town is likely to attract young people's attention and provoke thought.
It is the first part of a three-phased initiative launched to coincide with alcohol awareness week.
Young people will be recruited via schools and youth clubs to create a short film based on alcohol and anti social behaviour and a youth project involving geocaching, a worldwide treasure hunting game that uses a global positioning system, will be set up.
Comments are closed on this article.