Increasing funding for test kits by instituting a stricter enforcement
Funding for testing equipment and additional training for door personnel are among the measures announced to combat spiking. A further “modernization” of the law, according to the Home Office, will make it plain that spiking, which is the unauthorised introduction of alcohol or drugs into the body or drink of another person, is a criminal offence.
The proposals have received widespread support from activists. However, they fall short of specific demands from some to criminalise spiking. The following measures have been declared by the government: Providing hundreds of additional door personnel with training to identify potential offenders and indicators that an individual may have been boosted, Investing in research into testing devices that can identify spiked beverages, across England and Wales, the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) will conduct intensive operations during peak spike periods and An online instrument that will be implemented across all police departments to facilitate anonymous reporting of spiking incidents.
Spiking, according to Home Secretary James Cleverly, is a heinous offence that can leave victims with permanent scars.
“Our all-encompassing new regulations are intended to assist law enforcement and personnel in bars, restaurants, taverns, and other establishments in their efforts to safeguard patrons and apprehend more wrongdoers.” The government declared on Sunday that it would amend the Criminal Justice Bill to “absolutely” state that spiking is prohibited. It stated that this would be supported by distinct, legally binding guidance that would define “spiking” in a “unequivocal” manner.
A portion of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 will be revised to reflect the modification. This act already criminalises the malicious administration of poison with the intent to cause severe bodily injury or endanger life.
The government stated earlier this year that multiple offences already encompassed soaring, so it was unnecessary to enact a new law.
Members of parliament serving on the Home Affairs Committee have advocated for the establishment of a distinct offence known as “spiking,” contending that such legislation could enhance police data and encourage more frequent incident reports.
When reporters inquired as to why the government had no intention of taking this action, Mr. Cleverly responded, “This is an extremely antiquated law that police officers are acquainted with and do comprehend.
“With this in mind, we are revising the legislation to enhance its applicability and clarity regarding spiking. This will enable law enforcement personnel to comprehend and implement the provision, thereby conveying to the public that such conduct is entirely abhorrent.”
Although official statistics on spiking are not routinely released, the NPCC reported nearly 5,000 incidents of drink and needle spiking to the police in England and Wales in the 12 months leading up to September 2022.
Sharon Gaffka, a former contestant on Love Island and a personal victim of drink spiking, has advocated for the following: “Although my main concern has long been for legislative updates, it is imperative that preventive measures such as venue staff training and drink testing kits be implemented and funded.”
Shadow minister for domestic violence and safeguarding Alex Davies-Jones stated, “Labour has called for spiking to be made a separate offence and for each police force to have a rape and severe sexual offence unit in order to increase the number of people coming forward and the likelihood of convictions.”