Press release by Raymond Hainey 15/02/2010
Aberdeen pubs and clubs have banned a drug despite it still being legal in the UK.
UNIGHT Aberdeen members have decided to ban anyone caught on, or trying to get into, their premises with mephedrone known at MCAT.
UNIGHT Aberdeen chairman Mark Donlevy said: "There has been a lot of concern about this drug across the country, even though it is legal.
"This is still a psychoactive drug and has the potential to cause anti-social behaviour, which we will not tolerate and could even cause serious health issues for users."
This ban sends a clear message to our patrons that we will not tolerate drugs of any kind and anyone caught with mephedrone will face a ban not just from one establishment, but all of them."
Grampian Police substance misuse co-ordinator Detective Inspector Andy Imray said: "This ban speaks volumes for the commitment of UNIGHT members to keeping our venues drugs-free.
"Grampian Police is determined to work with all our partners to keep our city centre as pleasant a place to visit as possible.
"While mephedrone is still a legal drug, there is evidence that it can lead to illness among users.
"And like illegal drugs its effects can be unpredictable, especially when combined with alcohol or an illegal substance.
"This is a very positive, socially responsible move by UNIGHT and Grampian Police supports it wholeheartedly."
UNIGHT Aberdeen, launched last year, now comprises a total of 23 late night venues across the city.
UNIGHT works by information-sharing by members and patrons caught behaving anti-socially, with drugs or taking part in violence could face a ban from all participating venues.
Offenders get a letter banning him or her from all UNIGHT premises for a fixed period up to and including a life ban for serious offenders which will then be enforced by door staff.
In addition, anyone caught committing a criminal offence will be dealt with by Grampian Police.
Similar schemes have been credited with cutting night-time crime in other cities across the UK, including Edinburgh.
The unight group has now recruited the majority of Aberdeens nightclubs and late night venues in Aberdeens city centre, the unight members now include 16 nightclubs 3 casinos and 3 gentlemens clubs giving a new total of 22 members. With a small handful of venues still to join unight will have soon reached its goal of recruiting all of Aberdeen's nightclubs which will finally mean a ban from one really will be a ban from all.
by Stephen Christie
UNRULY revellers could face a blanket ban from clubs and bars in Aberdeen.
Fourteen nightspots have signed up to the Unight scheme, in which venues share a database to identify and ban troublemakers.
It is aimed at stamping out the use of drugs, violence and weapons in the city centre at the weekend.
Participating clubs include Liquid, Tiger Tiger, Espionage and Soul.
Speaking at the launch of the scheme at Liquid yesterday, club manager and Unight chairman Mark Donlevy said: We are convinced Unight will provide a safer, better-managed night life in the city.
He expects the scheme to be running at the start of next month, and a further 20 businesses have expressed an interest.
Chief Superintendent Albert Donald, of Grampian Police, said: We already have a number of practical and innovative measures in place to reduce crime in the city centre, particularly at night and weekends. We see Unight as complementing the significant work already done.
Aberdeen Community Safety Partnership chairman Martin Greig said: At night, the environment of the city centre is very challenging with many people moving around and an increased risk of alcohol fuelled violence and crime. We all share responsibility in the fight against crime and disorder.
Other venues signed up to the Unight scheme, which is already operating in Edinburgh, include Cafe Drummond, Priory, Exodus and Tunnels.
By Neil Evans
TROUBLEMAKERS could be banned for life from pubs and clubs across Aberdeen.
Aberdeen clubs and other late-night clubs are joining forces to crack down on the worst offenders.
New scheme Unight, launching next month, will see details of people committing serious offences such as buying and taking drugs, or fighting barred from all Aberdeen clubs taking part.
And details of any troublemakers, such as name, age, height and distinguishing features, would be loaded up on to a central database for Aberdeen clubs.
CCTV footage or photographs of offenders would also be included in the file.
Aberdeen bouncers, and other club staff, would be regularly briefed on any people who had been listed on the database.
Secretary of Unight Mark Donlevy who is the licensee at Liquid nightclub in Aberdeens Bridge Place said the scheme would help make Aberdeen a safer place.
This is not a vigilante group trying to be an alternative to the police, he said.
We are hoping the possibility of being banned from all premises will be enough of a deterrent.
So far 31 premises have signed up to the scheme, including Aberdeens three casinos.
The scheme has already been used in Edinburgh clubs and is due to be officially launched in Aberdeen on August 17.
It is hoped the database will be up and running by September 1 when new licensing laws are also introduced.