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Proper planning prevents a summer to regret - Waikato Police

Proper planning prevents a summer to regret warn Waikato Police

24 December 2013

Waikato Police are urging summer revellers intent on enjoying popular holiday spots to add a bit of prior planning to their celebrations in they can be protected not only from the attentions of others but also from themselves.

Detective Sergeant Martyn Hughes of the Thames-Coromandel CIB said with tens of thousands of visitors routinely hitting Waikato holiday hotspots, it was reasonable to expect not all have the best intentions, particularly when drinking.

"Over the past few summers we've come across a number of avoidable incidents where people have put themselves in vulnerable positions and fallen foul of others.

"In 2010 we found a girl under the influence of illegal drugs having underage sex in Whangamata. This girl was taken by Police to a place of safety. Last year officers policing the same area closed down a party and found a 16-year-old girl heavily intoxicated. She too was taken to a place of safety."

Other examples over recent summers have include a teenage girl with a learner's drivers licence being given a car to drive down to the Coromandel from Auckland and driving into a house when she reached her destination and the arrest of several teenagers last year for fighting while intoxicated.

"We as a community need to look at how well supervised these young adults are. Parents or caregivers need to take steps before these young people come to the attention of Police and if that means them not coming to the beach without supervision then so be it."

Mr Hughes said while in many cases Police are able to intervene and prevent serious harm from happening, sometimes people placed themselves in situations where they couldn't be helped.

"That's why we're urging people to prepare for a good, and a safe summer.

"If you go out in a group make sure you come home in a group. Keep an eye on your drinks and don't let them out of your sight."

Mr Hughes said all too often people relied on the likes of cell-phones to be able to raise the alarm if they get into trouble but all too often that wasn't the case.

"Scenarios and surroundings can deteriorate very quickly and before you know it you're in a situation you can't get out of and that's what we, as Police want to prevent.

"That is why legislation such as the recently reviewed Alcohol Act and local liquor bans are so effective as it allows authorities to take preventative action but at the same time we need people to take some individual responsibility."

Some of that individual responsibility includes;
• Not over indulging in alcohol
• Telling people when and where you are going and more importantly- when you'll be back
• Going out in a group and staying in your group
• Not accepting drinks from strangers and keeping your drinks in view
• Keeping an eye out on one another
• Accepting that no consent equals no sex
• If a person is slurring their words there cannot be consent for sex
• If a person can't stand up there cannot be consent for sex
• If you don't get a yes- then the answer is no

"At the end of the day, Police have enough to do preventing crime and victimisation to act as the fun Police as well.

"But if people can't step up and take a small bit of responsibility to keep themselves, and others safe, then we will be obliged to. Our preference is people take responsibility for their own actions so then we can all have a safe, enjoyable summer to remember, not one to regret."

ENDS

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