SPI0024

Written evidence submitted by the Night Time Industries Association (SPI0024)

WRITTEN SUBMISSION TO HOME AFFAIRS COMMITTEE INQUIRY ON SPIKING

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Executive summary

  1. The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) is concerned by the reported rise in spiking incidents and is determined to work with partners across local authorities, police and other agencies to tackle spiking. Spiking reports are particularly concerning as there is currently no way to accurately monitor or compare the scale of the problem, given the various approaches to spiking and inconsistent ways of recording spiking as a criminal offence. Venues in the night time economy already provide thorough staff training to identify cases of spiking and provide support to victims, and the NTIA has engaged in a number of awareness campaigns on the subject. While thorough security checks are commonplace as a condition of entry to venues, security searches alone will not be enough to tackle spiking, given the statutory and practical limits on searches. We are encouraged by the spiking pilot scheme conducted by Devon and Cornwall Police in collaboration with licensed venues as a means to proactively identify cases of spiking, support victims, and secure evidence for convicting perpetrators. The NTIA would like to see the Government take an active step to encourage the national roll-out of such schemes and harness its communications infrastructure for a messaging campaign to raise awareness of the signs of spiking and the available avenues of support. 

 

About the Night Time Industries Association

  1. The Night Time Industries Association (NTIA) is a leading not-for-profit trade body representing night time economy businesses in the UK. These industries can be described as those trading predominately between the hours of 6pm and 6am, such as nightclubs, live music venues, bars, pubs and casinos. The night time economy is also supported by a vast supply chain and auxiliary businesses. The NTIA consists of 1,400 members, representing 9,000 night time economy businesses across the UK.

 

  1. The NTIA welcomes the Home Affairs Committee Inquiry into Spiking as an important step to re-evaluate the current landscape for tackling spiking in night time economy venues and other environments. We remain committed as an industry to work constructively with partners, authorities and the Government to eradicate spiking and are submitting written evidence to this inquiry in response to growing reports of spiking in night time economy venues, and to share proposals to end this practice. Our response is confined to the operational perspective of preventing, dealing with, and responding to spiking incidents.
  2. The prevalence of spiking
     
  1.    How common is spiking?

 


b. Where and when does it happen?

 


5. How spiking should be prevented and addressed

 

a.  How effective is partnership working between the police and others (such as local authorities, the health service, night-time industries, universities and third sector organisations) in safeguarding potential and actual victims of spiking?

 


 

b.                   How effective are the measures used to prevent spiking, including the advice and guidance that is used to train, educate and support those involved in handling this type of crime (such as police officers, nightclub security staff and A&E staff)?
 

  1.                 What barriers do victims face in reporting spiking incidents and obtaining treatment and support?

 

  1.                Are the police doing enough to identify perpetrators and bring them to justice?

 


e.  What role should the Government play in tackling this crime?

 

 

January 2022