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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 5 - Town House. View directions

Contact: Iain Robertson, tel. 01224 522869 or email 

No. Item


Minute of Meeting of 13 September 2016 pdf icon PDF 133 KB



The Forum Resolved:

To approve the minute as a correct record.


Matters Arising


With reference to item 2, the Clerk advised that he would raise the development of a referral system for individuals who had been banned from licensed premises in the self-policing scheme in Torry due to alcohol abuse with the Safer Aberdeen Manager and request that an update be provided to the Forum’s next meeting;


With reference to item 2, Diane Sande (Licensing Standards Officer, ACC) advised that the LSOs had been in contact with the Council’s Community Council Liaison Officer to arrange a training event based on Alcohol Focus Scotland’s Community Toolkit with an indicative date of 7 December 2016. The Convener (Alcohol and Drugs Partnership) suggested that the Forum’s Community Council representative should also be consulted on progress and the Clerk advised that he would provide Ms Sande with the relevant contact details;


With reference to item 5, the Convener informed the Forum that after consultation the Scottish Governemnt would no longer be introducing new stop and search powers for Police Scotland;


With reference to item 10, Insp Kenneth McGeough (Police Scotland) explained that Sgt Barry Skinner would be attending an Alcohol Focus Scotland event in Inverurie on 23 November 2016 and he would provide an update to the Forum at the Forum’s next meeting; and


With reference to item 11, Diane Sande advised that University Freshers Week had passed without major incident and explained that the LSOs had worked constructively in partnership with Police Scotland, the Universities and the licensed trade in this regard.


The Forum Resolved:

(i)         to instruct the Clerk to contact the Community Safety Partnership for an update on the self-policing scheme in Torry;

(ii)        to note the update on the Community Toolkit event;

(iii)       to instruct the Clerk to provide the contact details of the Forum’s Community Council representative to Diane Sande;

(iv)       to request the LSOs to liaise with the Forum’s Community Council representative on arrangements for the Community Toolkit event;

(v)       to request an update on the Alcohol Focus Scotland event held in Inverurie on 23 November 2016; and

(vi)       to recognise the work of Forum partners during Freshers Week and to commend them for keeping young people safe from harm during this period.



Membership Updates


The Clerk explained that the Council’s Education and Children’s Service had nominated Miriam Smith (Education and Children’s Services, ACC) to be their sole representative to the Forum and advised they would no longer be alternating between three Council officers when attending Forum meetings.


The Convener highlighted that the Vice Convener had been absent from a number of recent Forum meetings and requested that the Clerk correspond with him to gauge his level of interest and future involvement in the Forum.


The Forum Resolved:

(i)        to note that Miriam Smith would be the sole representative to the Forum from Education and Children’s Services; and

(ii)        to instruct the Clerk to correspond with the Vice Convener to gauge his level of interest in continuing to be a member of the Licensing Forum.




Letter to the Convener of the Licensing Board - 27 October 2016 pdf icon PDF 75 KB


The Convener explained that he had written to the Convener of the Licensing Board to follow up on the recommendations the Forum had made to the Board at the Joint Meeting on 8 June 2016. The Clerk noted that he had not yet received a response but advised that the post of Depute Clerk was currently vacant and this may explain why no response had so far been received. He added that a recruitment process was ongoing and he would liaise as soon as possible with the new Depute Clerk to progress matters of concern to the Forum.


The Forum Resolved:

(i)           to note the correspondence;

(ii)          to instruct the Clerk to meet with the incoming Depute Clerk to discuss matters of importance to the Forum; and

(iii)       to request an update on whether a response had been received at the Forum’s next meeting.


Alcohol Focus Scotland Licensing Event - 15 September 2016 pdf icon PDF 106 KB


The Convener noted that a number of members attended this event and he explained that Alcohol Focus Scotland had organised four regional events focussing on areas of success and challenge in relation to alcohol licensing since 2012. He informed members that the event was well run and he particularly highlighted the contribution of Dr Tara Shivaji who presented a short film on the difficulties of being surrounded by alcohol through the perspectives of two people who had struggled with alcohol abuse as they tried to go about everyday activities such as shopping for groceries.


Thereafter members discussed the event and agreed that the sessions were useful and provided different perspectives on the licensing process as the event was attended by colleagues from a number of councils, third sector organisations, Police Scotland and the NHS. Members also noted that the event provided an excellent opportunity for networking.


The Forum Resolved:

To note the report.


Innkeeper System Overview (to follow)


Insp Kenneth McGeough provided an overview of the Innkeeper system and explained that the software recorded incidents and inspections relating to licensed premises and helped support Police Scotland’s licensing functions. He explained the capabilities and functionality of the software and noted how data was compiled, processed and stored. Insp McGeough confirmed that the Innkeeper system provided the basis for the Licensing team’s inspection framework and suggested that it might be worthwhile for Forum members to observe the software’s practical application and be given a demonstration by Sgt Barry Skinner at Police Scotland’s Aberdeen City headquarters at Queen Street.


Thereafter members questioned how criminal incidents such as shoplifting were recorded on the system and discussed the capacity of the software to drill down into the data and to differentiate between alcohol licensing and other licensing information relating to taxis and street vendors. Insp McGeough also confirmed that he would be happy to provide data requests from the Forum that could otherwise be attained through the freedom of information process.


The Forum Resolved:

(i)         to instruct the Clerk to liaise with Kenneth McGeough with regards to hosting the 25 January 2017 meeting of the Forum in Queen Street Police Headquarters;

(ii)        to request Insp McGeough to liaise with Sgt Barry Skinner to prepare a practical demonstration of the Innkeeper system for Forum members on 25 January 2017; and

(iii)       to thank Insp McGeough for the informative presentation.



Minimum Unit Pricing pdf icon PDF 78 KB


The Convener explained that the Court of Session had ruled on 21 October 2016 that the Scottish Government’s minimum unit pricing proposals as outlined in the Alcohol (Minimum) Pricing (Scotland) Act 2012 was lawful. He noted that there was still recourse to appeal the ruling to the UK Supreme Court and this had to be lodged with 28 days of the ruling. He advised that officers would continue to monitor this process and provide updates to the Forum as and when they were made available.


The Forum Resolved:

To note the report.


Health Impact Assessments pdf icon PDF 206 KB


Shamini Omnes (Aberdeen City Health and Social Care Partnership) advised that Health Inequalities Impact Assessments (HIIA) had been raised at the Joint Licensing Meeting in June 2016 and a recommendation had been made that the Convener of the Licensing Board and Depute Clerk should meet with Dr Tara Shivaji (Public Health) to discuss the integration of the assessments within the refreshed Statement of Licensing Policy. Ms Omnes provided the Forum with an overview of HIIA and explained they created a process for evaluating positive and negative impacts of policies on individuals and helped practitioners to better understand people’s lives and experiences.


She explained that HIIA would be based on evidence and would adopt a collaborative approach to ensure that individuals were integrated into the decision making process. She noted that HIIA made sure that diversity and disadvantage were considered as well as other social and resource factors when evaluating a policy’s impact on an individual’s health. Ms Omnes then outlined the steps for developing HIIA and advised that this would involve a scoping exercise; the drafting of terms of reference; a literature review and a full consultation process with community groups and other relevant stakeholders. She added it was Public Health’s aim to schedule a workshop on HIIA in the next couple of months.


Thereafter there were questions on the alignment between equality and health inequality impact assessments and the integration of HIIA within the GIRFEC programme. Ms Omnes also highlighted that Glasgow City had introduced HIIA in 2010 and it had been successful.


Forum members advised that they would be happy to be consulted on the HIIA process but would require further information and guidance from Dr Shivaji before becoming more involved. Kenneth McGeough suggested that he would raise HIIA with Police Scotland colleagues from Glasgow City who had participated in the assessment process in 2010.


The Forum Resolved:

(i)         to note the report;

(ii)        to request further information and guidance from Dr Shivaji on HIIA;

(iii)       to advise Public Health to consult with Forum members individually to gauge their interest in participating in the HIIA workshop; and

(iv)       to thank Shamini Omnes for the informative presentation.



Meeting Dates 2017


The Clerk appended proposed meeting dates for 2017 and advised that meetings would continue to be held on a six-eight weekly cycle during weekday afternoons in the Town House, notwithstanding the proposed meeting in Queen Street Police Station on 25 January 2017.


He added that an indicative date of 6 June 2017 had been scheduled for the Joint Meeting with the Licensing Board but noted that this would be subject to discussions with the incoming Depute Clerk and the approval of the Licensing Board.


The meeting dates were as follows:


2pm, 25 January 2017 – Town House/Queen Street Police HQ


2pm, 5 April 2017 – Town House


2pm, 24 May 2017 – Town House


2pm, 6 September 2017 – Town House


2pm, 8 November 2017 – Town House


The Forum Resolved:

(i)         to approve the meeting dates for 2017; and

(ii)        to note that the Forum’s meeting on 25 January 2017 may be held in Queen Street Police Station subject to availability.


Update from Police Scotland


Kenneth McGeough advised that Police Scotland were preparing to unveil their new safety campaign which would be visible during the festive period. He noted that the Licensing Team was now on Twitter to expand their communication reach and suggested there may be opportunities for joint working with the Forum and its partners to promote areas of commonality.


Insp McGeough also informed the Forum that he would be attending a number of licensing seminars and advised that he would be shadowing his licensing counterpart in Glasgow during the Scottish League Cup final at Hampden Park on 27 November 2016. 


The Forum Resolved:

To note the update.


Update from Licensing Standards Officer


Diane Sande informed the Forum that the deadline for licensed premises to pay their annual licensing fees was 1 October 2016 and LSOs were currently perusing license holders who had not yet paid their fees. She added that LSOs continued to inspect premises to review their signage, documentation and to investigate noise and nuisance complaints.


The Forum Resolved:

To note the update.


Update from Unight Representative


No update.


Update from NHS Grampian and Alcohol and Drugs Partnership


The Convener informed the Forum that recent Information Services Division (ISD) statistics had shown that hospital admissions due to alcohol had increased last year which was the first rise in a number of years and noted that ADP would be monitoring the figures closely to determine if any trends were developing.


Heather Wilson (Public Health) highlighted that ADP’s festive campaign would be launched soon with a series of posters focussing on personal safety and responsibility when out drinking over the holiday period. ADP would also use social media to communicate their messages.


Ms Wilson explained that Public Health had been granted an award category at the Best Bar None awards and had received two submissions focussing on how the licensed trade had helped support public health objectives. She advised that both proposals were excellent and the winner would be announced at the awards ceremony later today. She hoped that the category would raise Public Health’s profile amongst the licensed trade and precipitate greater interest and participation in their category ahead of next year’s awards.


Ms Wilson further advised that Public Health had compiled a list of late night coffee shops as alternative outlets to licensed premises for socialising in. She added that this list would be publicised on social media.


Shamini Omnes highlighted the 16 days of action which raised awareness about domestic violence and this campaign would commence on 25 November 2016.


The Forum Resolved:

(i)         to note the updates; and

(ii)        to request that an email is circulated to members to provide further information on the 16 Days of Action.


Update from Children's Services Representative


Miriam Smith explained that Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC) school forums were not yet established so there was no formal mechanism the Licensing Forum could feed into. She advised that as an interim measure she would provide updates to the Forum after consulting with the Council officer responsible for GIRFEC and noted that the Forum could also receive updates from Community Planning Aberdeen.


With regards to youth justice, Ms Smith noted that she had discussed this issue with colleagues who had advised that the relevant information had been presented to the Responsible Group which the Convener was a member of, and she recommended that data be extrapolated from this source to ensure there was no duplication of data or effort.


The Forum Resolved:

(i)         to request updates on the GIRFEC programme particularly how it relates to licensing and alcohol awareness as and when they became available; and

(ii)        to note the update.


Progress Statement pdf icon PDF 280 KB


The Forum Resolved:

To note the Progress Statement.