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Lookup NU author(s): Dr Ruth McGovernORCiD,
Dr Lisa Crowe,
Professor Elaine McCollORCiD,
Professor Dorothy Newbury-Birch,
Professor Eileen KanerORCiD
This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Taylor and Francis Ltd, 2020.
For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.
© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. Heavy alcohol use and associated needs are prevalent amongst arrestees. The custody suite offers an opportunity to identify and intervene with this population. However, it is unclear whether functions of care can be effectively delivered within an environment of containment. This study aimed to examine custody staff experiences of screening and delivering brief alcohol interventions to heavy drinking arrestees. Qualitative interviews were conducted with 25 custody staff (detention officers and assessment, intervention and referral staff), involved in a pilot feasibility trial of alcohol screening and brief interventions in the police custody suite. We examined the tension between containment and care using concepts of role security and therapeutic commitment to guide our analysis. Our findings show that custody staff considered brief interventions to be legitimate in the custody suite setting, although there were differing views relating to which staff are best placed to deliver them. Detention officers reported vacillating therapeutic commitment to intervening with heavy drinking arrestees, compounded by some arrestees being perceived to be ‘undeserving’ of care. Tensions inherent in the need for ‘containment’ as well as ‘care’ must be addressed if brief alcohol interventions are to be implemented within the custody suite.
Author(s): McGovern R, Crowe L, Addison M, Hickman M, Kidger J, McColl E, Newbury-Birch D, Kaner E
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy
Online publication date: 27/01/2020
Acceptance date: 14/10/2019
Date deposited: 13/02/2020
ISSN (print): 0968-7637
ISSN (electronic): 1465-3370
Publisher: Taylor and Francis Ltd
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