I took one of my kids to a birthday party last night. As the dutiful dad, I collected again some time after midnight.
I pulled up outside the venue to see the usual gaggles of teenagers, some more drunk than others, hanging around in little groups & starting to make their way home, or elsewhere.
It was pretty cold & a little damp, nevertheless, I saw at least 3 girls who could no longer walk in their heels and were carrying them. One of them couldn’t bare to walk along the rough path & headed for the nearest grass verge, doubtless to get a little bit of frostbite from the freezing wet conditions, if not aÃ‚Â piece of dog crap or two nicely mingled between the toes.
Their biggest mistake, these girls, was to do it here & not in Torbay, where the local Old Bill would have swooped down in their public order transits & handed out a complimentary set of flip-flops. Yes, police are part of a Ã‚Â£30,000 campaign to give out flip flops to drunken female revelers so they can get home safely after a night of booze & clubbing.
Of course, the local senior officers are putting a different aspect on the scheme.
Superintendent Chris Singer said: “It’s not simply so that people can get home in comfort. It gives us the opportunity for us to talk to these young people and get over safety messages to them. We’re making sure we take every opportunity to engage with people and talk to them about keeping themselves safe.” (Note: You can’t talk to people these days; you have engage with them.)
Hmmm, so you can’t just stand outside a nightclub & tell people to ‘be safe’ you have to spend Ã‚Â£30,000 & come up with some hair-brained scheme to get some publicity & some tea & medals on the chief constable’s lawn?
I’d have thought by the time that vulnerable girls pour themselves half-cut onto the streets at 3 in the morning, it’s a bit late to be handing out safety advice. I’m not sure what flip flops are going to do to protect females. From memory most of the women in casualty in the early hours are either suffering from wounds inflicted by males they know, have been sexually assaulted in some way or are comatose through alcohol abuse. I don’t recall seeing that many who have suffered a footwear related calamity.
Perhaps they’re supposed to beat a prospective attacker around the head with the flat end of a pink flip-flop, the attacker could also read the helpful crime prevention message on the flip-flop just before it takes his eye out, “don’t attack women!”, two birds with one stone, and all that.
It kind of harks back to yesterday’s post about nobody willing to take responsibility for their own actions. Perhaps a better use of Ã‚Â£30,000 might be for the police to invest in loudhailers & get them to drive round the estates reminding girls to wear their own sensible shoes before they leave home for the alcohol parlours.