Children taken to safety in booze swoops

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Ten children were taken to safety as booze was seized during a night time operation to keep young people safe in Burnley.

Operation Cansafe, launched to safeguard young people on the streets who may be vulnerable or at risk of significant harm, saw three 16 year-old boys found in possession of alcohol who had lied to their parents about where they were staying that night. They were on their way to a house party where they intended to sleep.

Officers also seized 16 litres of spirits, beer and cider during the operation, which took place between 6-30pm and 1am.

Chief Insp Justin Srivastava said: “It is our collective responsibility to identify young people and children at risk in order to protect them and safeguard them from further harm.

“Young people who consume alcohol or take drugs increase the risk that they put themselves in, they could become either a victim or perpetrator in crime or anti-social behaviour. This operation aims to identify those young people before this happens.”

Police, Lancashire County Council Trading Standards, Burnley Community Safety Partnership, Burnley Children’s Social Care and Early Break joined together for the operation.

It was launched as part of the wider Community Alcohol Network which has been running since June 2011.

County Coun. Janice Hanson, Lancashire County Council Cabinet member for public protection, said: “Safeguarding children is a complex and challenging area of work.

“CANSafe protects young people and supports parents and carers to spot the signs they need to look out for, and what action they need to take, when they have concerns about alcohol misuse or other vulnerabilities.”

Anyone with information or concerns about underage drinking or anti social behaviour can contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.