Police blame drink laws for surge in women arrests

The number of women arrested for being drunk and disorderly is rocketing, new figures show. Police blame all-day drinking laws for fostering a binge culture.

West Midlands saw the biggest jump in numbers, rising more than twelve-fold from 59 in 2003/4 to 731 in 2007/8. Numbers were up by 50 per cent or more in all but six of the 15 regions covered.

Bullet Breakdown of arrests by region

The worst affected area, Northumbria, saw over 2,000 arrests in 2007/8. The figures were obtained by Channel 4 using the Freedom of Information Act.

Police officers blamed the widespread availability of cheap alcohol and the change in the licensing laws enabling pubs and bars to stay open continuously.

Alan Gordon of the Police Federation said: “There is a direct correlation between licensing reforms and increases in alcohol-fuelled disorder.

“We have a culture of irresponsibility towards alcohol in this country, which is more and more prevalent.

“The Government tells people to drink more responsibly but then sends out confusing messages by making alcohol more accessible.”

Police statistics

Police arrests of women for being drunk and disorderly

Area2003/042007/08Change
West Midlands59731+1,138%
Gwent28190 +578%
Leicestershire1477+450%
West Yorkshire528981+86%
Dyfed-Powys65120+84%
Essex112204+82%
Norfolk4578+73%
Durham190299+57%
North Yorkshire135109+55%
Northumbria1,4142,101+48%
Devon and Cornwall344375+9%
Cambridgeshire10490-13%
Northamptonshire6556-14%
Dorset11674-36%
Gloucestershire6729-56%
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