Group Says Public Drinking Ban Violates Public Space

Calling it a violation of public spaces, a new report from a civil liberties group in the UK has criticized the banning of public drinking in more than 600 places in England and Wales.
August 21, 2008, 7am PDT | Nate Berg
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"The report by The Manifesto Club, a civil liberties campaign group, claims authorities are increasingly taking control of the country's streets and parks to deprive people of the freedom to socialise."

"It says the public should be allowed to do as they please in public if they are not breaking the law, and accuses some police forces and councils of overstepping their legal powers by confiscating drinks without good reason."

"The group is calling on people to reclaim public spaces and plans to host a mass picnic to protest against drinking bans on Bank Holiday Monday in London's Hyde Park."

"It claims the idea took off in 2001 when the Criminal Justice and Police Act introduced Designated Public Place Orders, which allowed police officers to confiscate alcohol from drinkers and even arrest them. A similar power to confiscate drink from teenagers was put in place in 1997."

"The report says there are now 613 DPPOs across England and Wales, covering everything from the seafront at Southend to Bath town centre."

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Published on Wednesday, August 20, 2008 in Telegraph
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