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University of Teesside

School of Social Science & Law

MSc Contemporary Issues of Drug Use

Drugs, Crime & Sport:


Can sport be used as an effective tool for reducing
problematic drug use and offending behaviour?
An account, of clients, sports staff and substance misuse
professionals involved in the 2nd chance sports
programme County Durham and a review of previous
research finding.

Mark Williams
Dr Mark Simpson

Date of submission: 29th of August 2008


G7086401 Drugs, Crime & Sport

Word Count: 21.810

Acknowledgement

First and foremost I would like to thank my Wife and best friend Carole for her

belief in me and her constant support and encouragement when I needed it most.

I would also like to thank my Parents, Sons, family, and friends who have also

encouraged and supported me, especially throughout the writing of this

dissertation.

I would like to acknowledge all of the participating Agencies, Organisations,

Professionals and especially Clients. Without their participation and cooperation,

this piece of work would never have been possible.

I am also very grateful to my employer ‘Addaction’ and my colleagues, past and

present, who have supported me and have had an invaluable influence on my

development and progression.

Last but not least, I would like to give a very big thank you to Frank Whittle, Mark

Symington and Sarah Landale. They have all been a fountain of ideas,

inspiration and most importantly motivation throughout my study. Without their

help, support and guidance this would not have been possible.

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Dedicated to my Grandmother Martha Mary Rees and my Father In-law Arthur

West who would have been so proud.

Abstract

The following study explores and examines the possible influences sports

activities may have on effectively reducing problematic drug use and the

subsequent crime related to the problem. It will focus predominantly on the 2nd

Chance Sports Programme in County Durham and review the current opinion of

both the professionals and participating clients on its benefits.

The purpose of this study is to investigate specific themes connected to the use

of sport as a tool in rehabilitating drug using offenders. Firstly, it will examine the

arguments surrounding the possible links between sports activities and a

reduction in drug use and offending behaviour. Secondly, it will examine the

argument of cost effectiveness of such programmes. Finally, it will look at the

social attitudes and opinions vented towards such sports-based interventions for

the rehabilitation of drug using offender. It will examine a variety of similar

programmes which have embraced this concept and review both their findings

and outcomes.

A phenomenological approach will be used due to the fact that it will be asking

for their individual perceptions and experiences, and a purposive sample of four

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drug using clients, two sports coaching professionals and two substance misuse

professionals were selected due to their personal involvement in the programme.

All professionals are currently working with drug using offenders on a regular

basis. The overall Opinion from previous research in to the 2 nd Chance

Programme and this current research study on the importance of sport and how it

can be implemented as an intervention to reduce an individual’s drug use and

offending behaviour have been strikingly similar among clients, sports coaching

staff and substance misuse professionals. Both client and professional

perception has largely been that sporting activities do have a major role to play in

both reducing drug use and offending behaviour. However, there is also a body

of academic literature which questions this argument. The conclusion of this

study supports the argument that sport does have a major role to play in the

treatment of drug use and in reducing acquisitive crime. It will also argue that

public attitude towards such initiatives rehabilitating drug users and offenders are

extremely negative and that punishment and not rehabilitation is at the forefront

of public opinion. Finally it will argue that the cost effectiveness of these

programmes can only be examined once the rationale or specific objectives of

the programme are more clearly defined. However, the study does support the

argument that drug treatment is cost effective in reducing problematic drug use

and crime.

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Content

Chapter 1

Introduction

1) Background 8

2) The link between drugs & crime 13

3) 2nd Chance Programme 14

Chapter 2

Literature Review

1) Drugs & Crime 17

2) Sport, Drugs & Crime 20

3) Sports Culture 28

Chapter 3

Methodology

1) Preparation 33

2) Sampling 34

3) Interviews 35

4) Transcription and Coding 38

5) Analysis 38

6) Ethical Considerations 40

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Chapter 4

Does it work?

1) Little Evidence and Poorly Developed Rationale 43

2) ‘Those in Favour 50
Chapter 5

Review of Interviews

1) The Professionals view 61

2) The Clients view 67

Chapter 6

1) Cost Effectiveness 74

2) Social Attitude 79

Chapter 7

Conclusion 89

Chapter 8

Appendix A: Invitation Letter for Professionals 98

Appendix B: Invitation Letter for Clients 100

Appendix C: Information Sheet for Clients 102

Appendix D: Consent Form 104

Appendix E: Interview Guide for Professionals 105

Appendix F: Interview Guide for Clients 106

Appendix G: Face Sheet for Clients 107

Appendix H: Transcripts of Clients 108

Appendix I: Transcripts of Professionals 116

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Appendix J: Request for Ethical Approval Form 126

References 133

Glossary

DAAT Drug & Alcohol Action Team

DCMS Department for Culture, Media and Sport

DH Department of Health

DIP Drug Interventions Programme

FA Football Association

FF Football Foundation

GONE Government Office North East

HO Home Office

NIDA National Institute on Drug Abuse

NOMS National Offender Management Service

NTA National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse

NTORS National Treatment Outcomes Research Study

PPO Prolific & Priority Offenders

YOI Youth Offending Institute

YOT Youth Offending Team

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Chapter 1

Introduction

The Background

In Britain, as in many other countries, there is a widespread, though largely

untested, assumption that sport and physical activities can make an important

contribution to reducing drug use and crime. The provision of sporting facilities as

a means of accommodating disaffected working class youth has been articulated

in several policy statements since the early 1960s, and that policy was reinforced

by the rise in youth unemployment and by the serious urban unrest in the 1980s

and 1990s. Waddington (2000:1)

The UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 was the first international

document endorsing the principle of providing measures of treatment, education

aftercare, rehabilitation and social reintegration as an alternative to, or in addition

to, conviction or punishment (Article 36b) for drug related offences.

This principle has been reaffirmed several times in subsequent years in

international agreements, strategies and action plans (European Monitoring

Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction - EMCDDA 2005). The EU Drugs Action

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Plan 2005-2008 asks member states to 'make effective use and develop further

alternatives to prison for drug addicts who commit drug-related offences'

(European Commission, 2005).

Within Britain, sport-based schemes designed to combat delinquency and drug use

have won support from all the major political parties, from the police, the probation

service, and local government and, not surprisingly, from organisations involved in

promoting sport, such as the Sports Council and Sport England. On this basis,

such schemes have attracted large amounts of funding both from the government

and from voluntary sector organisations concerned with drug users and offenders;

at the moment they are of particular interest in terms of the Government’s agenda

on social exclusion.

The research undertaken as part of this study will focus on how clients and

professionals perceive the use of sport and specifically the 2 nd Chance

Programme as an effective intervention in reducing their problematic drug use

and subsequent offending behaviour which can be related directly to their

addiction. A brief introduction to the 2nd chance programme and its origins is

highlighted here in Chapter 1.

The Clients and professionals involved in the 2nd Chance Sports Initiative have

been interviewed, using a semi-structured interviewing technique and the

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approach used was ethno-methodological. Interviews did not take longer than 30

minutes and in these interviews clients were asked to briefly describe their

background, outline how long they had be introduced to the programme, how

long they had been accessing the sports provision available and how easy it was

to access the sports programmes. They were also asked to share their opinion

on how the sports programme could be improved or broadened.

The sports coaching staff and the substance misuse professionals give details of

any previous experiences, relevant knowledge, and qualifications relating to

either sports coaching or substance misuse worker role. Finally their personal

opinions and impressions, gained from their experiences on using sport and

sports activities to engage and to treat problematic drug users and to address

their offending behaviour.

One important point to consider when reviewing the outcomes of the professional

interviews would be that although both the sports coaching staff and the

substance misuse professionals work together and both passionately believe that

the use of sport is extremely beneficial for the clients and their well being, both

sets of professional come from very different backgrounds and agenda’s.

However, even though the professionals meet from different cultures and

agendas their opinions and attitudes towards the use of sport as a tool to engage

and treat problematic drug using offenders is strikingly similar.

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Chapter 2 covers the literature review. After delving into the concept and

reviewing the relevant literature and material available this study can conclude

that there has been a limited amount of research invested in investigating the

links between sport, drug treatment and crime reduction and that a considerable

amount of the research focusing on this concept is mostly directed at youth crime

and drug addiction. There has also been a limited amount of governmental

documentation, policies or guidance available for review when researching in this

area. However there has been some notable academic research from both these

shores and beyond which together with a small group of studies, including this

one, form the base of a large amount of the arguments and conclusions.

Chapter 3 looks at the methodology and methods used during conducting the

interviews. It will concentrate on sampling strategies, data collection, recording

information, transcription, strategies used to analyse the interviews, and finally

the possible risks and ethical implications.

Chapter 4 will be divided in to the arguments fore and against the idea that sport

can be used as an effective tool in combating drug use and crime. It will discuss,

compare, argue and summarise the main findings and opinions. This study will

argue that sports programmes such as the 2nd chance programme do have a

significant role to play in both the treatment of drug use and in the reduction of

acquisitive crime.

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Chapter 5 reviews the research material gathered from the client and

professional interviews highlighting themes of consensus, before attempting to

construct the conclusion which will indicate that both clients and professionals

overwhelmingly support the arguments for such programmes.

Chapter 6 will consider some of the main issues surrounding the cost

effectiveness of the programmes and to review public opinion and attitudes

towards the use of such initiatives in the rehabilitation of drug using offenders.

Chapter 7 will provide a concluding summary of the study as a whole, pointing

out the possible weaknesses and limitations within it, such as the limitations in

size. It will also highlight ideas for further research and debate such as, larger

scale and more longitudinal research studies with a more defined rationale.

Chapter 8 consists of all the relevant documentation required in undertaking the

research study, such as, letters of invitation, research information and consent

forms. The interview questions and references can also be found in this section.

The intended outcome of this study is to be an informative and useful piece of

work for both professionals working in the sports activities field and those

working in the substance misuse and criminal justice fields. It hopes that it will

give useful indications as to how the clients or participants perceive the concept

and the service provision already available and how they feel it can be developed

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or improved. It will also give a strong indication as to how the professionals

directly involved in the programme perceive the concept and its potential.

It is expected that this piece of work, although limited, may have some

contribution in influencing those who have the privilege of policy making and

commissioning schemes and services that utilise the concept of sport as a tool in

reducing drug use and crime. However, as Weiss (1997) so poignantly suggests

‘Nobody in high office reads social science journals, far less papers or books’.

Coalter (2007:15)

Pawson (2006) cited in Coalter (2007:15) suggests that ‘As one ascends the

intervention hierarchy the capacity to absorb complex information dwindles by

the bullet point, so that rules out some potential readers’!

The study will now briefly examine the interaction between drugs and crime. This

relationship is a complex one and an in-depth examination is beyond the scope

of this study. However, it will give a brief outline of the possible links for the

purpose of the arguments and its outcomes of the study.

Links between drugs and crime.

Crime may result from the illegality of the drug itself, such as possession of, the

selling of, or the importing of an illegal substance. It maybe caused by behaviour

accredited to the influence of the drug itself on the individual or individuals.

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Finally, it may be related to the need for acquiring monies to buy the drugs. This

could lead to individuals participating in activities such as, theft, burglary, or

robbery to fulfil this need.

A review of the literature regarding drug abuse and the criminal justice system

(Hough 1996) concluded that, despite the widespread use of illegal drugs, most

drug users are not drawn into other forms of crime. A small minority of drug users

develop serious dependency problems, need substantial sums of money and

finance at least part of their drug misuse through crime. The variety of sources

includes income, benefits, and gifts, loans, selling property, theft, prostitution and

drug dealing. This review also found that a significant minority of crime is drug-

related, where the proceeds of the offence happen to be spent on drugs, but a

smaller proportion is drug-driven, where the offence is committed solely to pay

for illegal drugs.

The 2nd Chance Programme.

The Drug Interventions Programme is a large scale Home Office funded crime

reduction programme which seeks to get drug using offenders into treatment and

retain them there in order to reduce their levels of offending. Treatment

programmes which offer pharmacological and psychological interventions are

key to this behaviour change, however there is frequently a problem in motivating

individuals to engage in this process of change.

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Many have a range of additional problems and difficulties largely resulting from

social exclusion and there is a need to develop programmes and interventions

more suited to their needs and interests and to include accommodation, learning

and skills and employment as part of the essential “wrap around services”.

Since June 2005 a series of football training projects have been run throughout

North East England as part of a unique rolling Drug Interventions Programme

sports initiative. The 8-week long projects which run for a day each week have

been supported and led by student coaches within the North East’s five main

universities, each resulting in local tournaments in Newcastle, Teesside,

Sunderland and Durham. Affiliated with the FA, over 400 drug service users

have to date been engaged in sporting activities through this Project. 14 service

users have gained FA coaching qualifications and 1 individual has since found

employment.

In May 2006 Durham University embarked on the fifth sports Programme,

involving service users from both Durham and Darlington Drug Intervention

Programmes. Addaction led the Durham DIP contribution supported by DISC

and Lifeline, with NECA leading from Darlington. An average of 25 drug users

took part in the football coaching programme whilst 4 women took part in

activities in the gym. Twelve Durham university students coached the service

users and achieved their FA Level 1 coaching certificates.

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During the summer of 2007 the 2nd Chance Sports Programme was rolled out

throughout the North East replacing the old DIP sports initiative. The programme

had received a considerable increase in funding through the Football foundation,

Sport England and Northern Rock, as well as retaining the long term funding

commitments from all of the Drug & Alcohol Action Teams (DAATs) in the North

East. The 2nd chance programme opened up to all service users and not only

DIP clients as was originally the case. It also offered a much wider variety of

sports and sports activites, such as, rock climbing, white water rafting and

archery, to name but a few. Durham University actually advertised the possibility

of over forty different sports and has pioneered rowing with the potential of

entering boat crews made up of clients in the local Regatta and other racing

events. The 2nd chance programme in County Durham currently runs weekly

core activities, such as, the Gym, football, trampolining, and kick boxing as well

as monthly taster events such as, archery and rockclimbing, as mentioned

earlier. Clients are regularly asked for feedback on the events and also surveyed

as to what events and activities they wish to participate. All events and activities

are organised and coordinated by the University coaching staff and the

participating staff from the relevant drug support agencies.

Chapter 2 will now review the literature used in constructing the relevant

arguements of this study, both those in favour of the use of sport as a

rehabilitative tool and those with reservations regarding its effectiveness.

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Chapter 2

Literature Review

Drugs & Crime

In Britain, as in many other western societies, there has been over the last two or

three decades growing concern over what has been described as 'widespread

drug use amongst very large numbers of young people' (Parker et al., 1998: 1).

In particular, concern has been expressed about the use of illegal recreational

drugs such as cannabis and 'harder' drugs such as cocaine, as well as the many

and various kinds of criminal behaviour said to be associated with drug use

(Boreham and McManus, 2003; Condon and Smith, 2003). This concern has

manifested itself in a number of ways, not least in the emergence of a plethora of

policy initiatives designed to combat social problems, including those of adult

drug users and offenders.

In 2007 The European Association for the Treatment of Addictions (EATA)

statistics showed that approximately 4 million people are using at least 1 illicit

drug each year throughout the UK. It is estimated that drug habits cost between

£10 and £18 billion therefore in response to the current problem the government

allocated in the region of £400 million to be spent on treatment services and

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provision in 2008 (NTA 2007). In an attempt to address the high levels of illicit

drug use, the national drugs strategy ‘Tackling Drugs Together’ was published in

1995 and the 10 year strategy ‘Tackling drugs to build a better Britain’ 1998. This

strategy has now been review, revamped, and relaunched in April 2008 with just

as much importance and priority as its predesesors.

The National Treatment Agency (NTA) is also a leading organization in terms of

substance misuse, the NTA was launched in 2001 as a specialist agency to

‘improve the availability, capability and effectiveness of treatment for drug

misuse in England’ (NTA, 2007).

The interaction between drugs and crime is complex, examining the full extent is

beyond the remit of this study. However, it will give a brief outline of the possible

links for the purpose of this dissertation, its arguments and its outcomes.

Crime may result from the illegality of the drug itself, such as possession of, the

selling of, or the importing of an illegal substance. It maybe caused by behaviour

accredited to the influence of the drug itself on the individual or individuals.

Finally, it may be related to the need for acquiring monies to buy the drugs. This

could lead to individuals participating in activities such as, theft, burglary, or

robbery to fulfil this need.

A review of the literature regarding drug abuse and the criminal justice system

(Hough 1996) concluded that, despite the widespread use of illegal drugs, most

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drug users are not drawn into other forms of crime. A small minority of drug users

develop serious dependency problems, need substantial sums of money and

finance at least part of their drug misuse through crime. The variety of sources

includes income, benefits, and loans, selling property, theft, prostitution and drug

dealing. This review also found that a significant minority of crime is drug-related,

where the proceeds of the offence happen to be spent on drugs, but a smaller

proportion is drug-driven, where the offence is committed solely to pay for illegal

drugs.

While hard and fast definitions are impossible, the term ’problem drug users’ is

generally employed by drug workers to include those whose drug taking involves

dependency, regular excessive use, or use which creates serious health risks.

There are, depending on source, an estimated 90,000 to 250,000 problem drug

users in England and Wales who could benefit from different forms of treatment.

NTORS (2005). A Home Office report on referring offenders to drug services

adds that those users whom we regard as problematic typically use large

amounts of heroin, crack or amphetamine; usually as part of a pattern of

polydrug use; they generally show signs of dependency; their drug use poses

risks to themselves and others; and they are often extensively involved in crime

to support their drug use. Hough, M. (1996)

Problem drug users are those who could benefit from the services of drug

agencies offering medical or other forms of treatment. However, the Association

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of Chief Officers of Probation advises caution in drawing too precise a conclusion

about crime and drug use by stating that it is simplistic to assume drug misuse

causes otherwise honest individuals to commit crime. What appears to happen is

that problematic drug use often coexists with other deviant behaviour including

offending. As drug use becomes increasingly problematic, the individual’s

propensity to offend increases. Increasingly problematic drug use is therefore

associated with the frequency and scale of offending but is much less often

associated with initiating a criminal career. House of Commons Report (2000:14)

Sport, Drugs & Crime

The use of sport has never played a major part in crime reduction or drug

rehabilitation programmes for adults, though it is argued that the Positive Futures

Programme run with Youth Offending Teams (YOTs) and other simular projects

and initiatives have clearly identified the value that sport has in engaging with

hard to reach groups, such as drug using offenders, or have they? Determining

whether sports activites are an effective tool in combatting drug use and crime

will be the main focus of this dissertation.

Coalter (2007) has examined the presumption that sport has the potential to

alleviate a variety of social problems and generally to ‘improve’ both individuals

and the communities in which they live. Sport is promoted as a relatively cost

effective antidote for a range of issues, such as, social exclusion, drug abuse,

persistent offending and educational underachievement, to name but a few.

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A large majority of the most recent literature surrounding this concept presents a

political and historical context for increased governmental interest in what has

become known as ‘sport for good’. The literature explores the particular social

issues that governments seek to address through sport, and examines the nature

and extent of the evidence for sports positive role.

Coalter (2007:1) highlights that in recent years sports have achieved an

increasingly high profile as part of New Labour’s social inclusion agenda. He

goes on to say that this is due to the assumption regarding its potential

contribution to addressing the social issues mentioned above and at the same

time being cost effective. However, these new opportunities which have been

welcomed by many involved in sport have been accompanied by a potential

threat which is, evidence based policy making.

The cost implications linked to drug use and crime, especially to the criminla

justice system are not only enormous in monetary terms but also in the price to

society in terms of human dignity. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

states, “According to several conservative estimates, every $1 invested in

addiction treatment programs yields a return of between $4 and $7 in reduced

drug-related crime, criminal justice costs, and theft alone. When savings related

to health care are included, total savings can exceed costs by a ratio of 12 to 1.

With such savings reportedly possible it is hard not to justify an increase drug

treatment programs and initiatives. Chapter six will examine the differing views

and opinions regarding this question and attempt to derive a conclusion.

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The economic costs imposed upon society by the NTORS cohort were largely

due to their criminality. Crime costs made up a substantial proportion of the total

economic costs of addiction, whereas direct addiction treatment costs accounted

for only six per cent of costs.

Detailed calculations of the crime costs after NTORS treatments were made both

in terms of offences and client contacts with the criminal justice system (arrests,

court appearances, prison stays etc). Both methods yielded similar results with

considerable reductions in crime costs after treatment. Health and social care

costs were relatively small in comparison. The reductions in offences were

associated with a drop in crime costs from around £6m before treatment to

approximately £2m at one year follow-up. Subsequent crime costs estimates at a

two year follow-up were also recording lower than at admission.

Cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit studies carried out in the US have also

shown that drug treatment was cost-effective and cost-beneficial in terms of

crime reduction effects. In most cases, the cost of treatment was recouped

during treatment, with additional cost-benefits as a result of reduced post-

treatment drug use.

A variety of commentators such as, (Coalter 2007 & Nichols 2007) point out that

the effectiveness of sports interventions are not easily measured and therefore

difficult to evidence. They also draw attention to the lack of a strong cumulative

body of research evidence for which to inform policy and practice. In fact, in an

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era of evidence-based policy making, the cumulative evidence base for many

claims for sport is relatively weak.

As for the links between sport and crime prevention (Coalter, Nichols, and

Crabbe) argue and discuss the vague and really unexamined claims regarding

sports ability to tackle such issues as anti-social behaviour, crime and substance

misuse. It is argued that this assumption is not a new one, in fact he refers to

Bailey (1978) and the Department of the Environment, white paper (1975:2)

which discuss concerns around ‘boredom and urban frustration’ and it’s

contribute to the reduction of hooliganism and delinquency.

The debate about the relationship between sports participation and crime divides

broadly into theories about rehabilitation of offenders and theories regarding

crime prevention or ‘diversion’. The rehabilitation theory tends to involve small

schemes with limited numbers of offenders or drug users, and is often based on

out door adventure activities. They tend to focus more on an intensive

counselling approach in which the programme is adapted to meet the needs of

the drug users or offenders. They are aimed at developing personal and social

skills, improve self-esteem and self-confidence, which it is hope will be

transferred to the wider social context and reduce drug use and offending

behaviour. Coalter (1998). Taylor et al (1999), West & Crompton (2001), Nichols

and Crow, (2004).

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Diversionary programmes, which are the predominant concern of social policy,

tend to be relatively large scale, open access sports programmes targeted at

‘youth at risk’ and run in specific areas for maximum effect. Coalter (2007:116)

With New Labours social inclusion agenda the significance of sport is indicated

by the establishment of a national sports-based programme called Positive

Futures. This was established in 2002 and by the end of 2004 had received over

£6 million in funding, as a partnership between the Home Office Drugs Strategy

Directorate, Sport England, the Youth Justice Board and the Football Foundation.

Coalter (2007:116). In many circles it is still undecided whether the money spent

on these and other similar initiates are a good investment or could be used more

productively.

The initial 24 Positive Futures projects were directly targeted at 10 – 16 year olds

and little if no funds made available to engage older young people or adults.

However, there are also indications from other initiatives, especially from the

USA that show that sports activities such as, ‘midnight soccer or basketball’

seem to have been associated with reductions in recorded crime. Morgan (1998),

Wilkins (1997), Hartmann & Depro (2006).

Coalter (2007:7) concludes that if research is to inform policy, he argues that it is

essential to seek to explore the question of sufficient conditions, which sports, in

which conditions, have what effects for which participants?

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A Major narrative review of the impacts of sports concluded that, although there

appear to be strong theoretical arguments for the potentially positive contribution

which sport can make to the reduction of the propensity to commit crime, ‘there is

an absence of robust intermediate or outcome data. Coalter et al (2000:47).

Coalter, Nichols and Crabbe amongst others reiterate throughout there literature

that we may need to adopt a different approach to research and evaluation if

sports researchers are to develop their understanding and make a substantial

contribution to sports policy.

Nichols (2007) amongst others also asks the question ‘Can sport help create an

environment that dissuades young people from crime and how can we better

measure the effects of sports-led initiatives against crime?

Nichols has examined eight different sports-led initiatives from around the World

and to evaluate them by highlighting ‘best practice’ in programme design and

evaluation, as well as the success and failure of the programmes.

Although Nichols is mostly focusing on youth drug use and crime, this study feels

that the same questions and answers can be used when directed at both adult

drug users and adult offenders. Especially as many of the most problematic drug

using offenders are in their late teens and early twenties.

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Nichols suggests how there may be synergy between programme objectives of

crime reduction and sports development. He argues that by understanding the

process by which sports activity may be an effective medium

for crime reduction programmes has implications for other forms of programmes

utilising other mediums such as art.

It is argued by some observers that an understanding of the role of sport in

programmes to reduce both problematic drug use and criminal behaviour

requires an understanding of how such programmes have a positive impact on

the individuals. Nichols draws attention to Brantingham and Faust’s (1976)

categorisation of programmes as Primary, Secondary and Tertiary as discussed

earlier. Understanding these categorisations and choosing the correct type for

any future schemes may be important in the success of the scheme and

evaluating and interpreting the findings and outcomes.

Notwithstanding the rhetorical and common-sense claims made on behalf of the

effectiveness of ‘sport in the community schemes’, the consensus among more

critical observers is that, despite the vast numbers of such schemes currently in

operation in the UK, there is very little evidence for their effectiveness in reducing

and preventing crime and drug ‘abuse’(Coalter, 2001; Collins and Kay, 2003;

Dunning and Waddington, 2003; Hartmann, 2001; Long and Sanderson, 2001;

Long et al., 2002; Nichols, 1997, 2004; Robins, 1990). This argument is due to a

lack of hard evidence on the outcomes of these programmes. Research has

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been soft to say the least and without hard facts this concept will always be a

focus of scepticism and criticism.

In addition to the absence of supporting empirical evidence there are also a

number of theoretical reasons why one might be sceptical about the claims made

on behalf of the effectiveness of such schemes. One frequent justification for the

use of sport in schemes where crime and drug reduction or prevention is the

main objective is that sport can create enjoyment and excitement, and thus

provide an antidote to boredom, for young people (Coalter, 2001; DCMS/Strategy

Unit, 2002; Nichols, 1997).

It is certainly the case, as Elias and Dunning (1986) have argued, that sport can

be seen as a ‘quest for excitement’. However, as Crabbe (2000: 383) has noted,

‘this is often for much the same reason that people might also choose to use

illicit drugs, become involved in criminal activity or even sport-related violence’. In

this regard, several studies have emphasised the importance that many young

people, particularly young males, attach to the use of legal (alcohol and tobacco)

and illegal drugs (such as cannabis and ecstasy) as one way in which to create

excitement, enjoyment and self-confidence while ‘hanging around’ and

socializing in the company of like-minded friends in their leisure time (see e.g.

Measham et al., 1998; Parker et al., 1998; Pavis and Cunningham-Burley, 1999;

Shildrick, 2002).

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Research has indicated that increased physical fitness, as a consequence of

sports participation, may enhance self-esteem (Trujillo, 1983). Sporting

achievement, may also offer a means of improving self-esteem. Self-esteem is

especially important for adolescents, for whom a central concern is establishing

their own sense of self-identity through social relations (Hendry et al., 1993:31-

57).

There is also evidence that sports activity can assist in the treatment of mental

health issues (see e.g. Careless & Douglas 2004, Morris & Faulkner 2003).

Occupational therapy commentators, despite taking up different theoretical

positions about the role and value of occupationally-linked activities in every day

life, seem to agree that engagement in physical activity has the potential to add

meaning and purpose to people’s lives. For example, Hammel (2004) argues that

purposeful activities, which would include football, have the potential to add

meaning through doing, being, belonging and becoming, while Dickie et al (2006)

suggests that it is not activity per se that makes the difference, but rather the

transactions that take place linking the person to the situation. If this is the case

and if one concedes that there is a link between problematic drug use and mental

health issues then one can only assume that this evidence also supports the

theory that sport a useful tool in addressing these issues.

Sport & Culture

As Dunning and Waddington (2003) have noted there is an important but

frequently neglected aspect of sporting culture which they describe as a

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'Januform' character, for it has, at least since the late medieval/early modern

period, been characterised by two different and contrasting ideological

syndromes involving what one might call, on the one hand, a 'Dionysian' or

'Epicurean', that is, pleasure-centred, strain, and, on the other hand a 'Stoical' or

'Puritanical' thrust.

The latter ideology found perhaps its clearest expression in the development in

the 19th century of the mem sana in corpore sano ethos, a process which was

bolstered in the wider society by the emergence, on the one hand, of the 'rational

recreation' movement and, on the other, of what might be called the 'sport/health'

ideology' (Dunning and Waddington, 2003: 355; Waddington, 2000).

In contrast, the Dionysian/Epicurean aspect, which has long been associated, in

particular, with physically dangerous contact sports such as football and rugby,

involves, among other things, the idea that it is 'manly' not only to play such

sports, but also to drink beer and to be able to 'hold your ale', that is to drink

copious quantities of alcoholic beverages after matches without becoming visibly

drunk and losing control.

This subculture has also often included the following elements: alcohol-related

initiation rites; ritualised drinking games which had the dual function of, first,

testing physical prowess and self-control under conditions of advancing

inebriation and, second, of increasing the quantities of alcohol consumed; and

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the singing of songs and the reciting of verses which had explicit sexual themes

and in which the mocking and degradation of females and male homosexuals

were recurrent themes (Dunning and Waddington, 2003: 356).

Studies of athletes and football clubs found that initiation ceremonies have

become normalised within sports clubs for both male and female athletes and

that, although initiation ceremonies were in some respects gendered (for

example, men's initiations more frequently involved nakedness and physical

abuse, ceremonies for both males and females tended to involve the excessive

consumption of alcohol (King, 2000). Alcohol related initiation ceremonies, or

'hazings', are also common in American collegiate sports (Hoover, 1999).

While there have been fluctuations in the relative emphasis and importance

associated with these two contrasting ideological syndromes, the

Dionysian/Epicurean element began, particularly from the Reformation period

onwards, to be pushed increasingly underground while the Puritanical/Stoical

element came increasingly to the fore, a process that occurred correlatively with

the emergence of Britain as a capitalist urban-industrial nation state (Dunning

and Waddington, 2003). This is important, for it explains the current pre-

eminence of the Puritanical/Stoical pole as a central aspect of the ideology of

those charged with the promotion of sport in public policy.

An understanding of this ‘Januform’ character of sport forms a vital prerequisite

for understanding key aspects of the increasing use of sporting schemes as

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vehicles of social policy. In this regard, it is important to note that such schemes

are premised on a one-sided perception of sport. That is, they emphasise the

Puritanical aspects of sporting culture while largely ignoring the

Dionysian/Epicurean aspects. In other words, such schemes are based on an

uncritical perception of sport as an unambiguously wholesome and healthy

activity in both a physical and a moral sense. Of course, such a perception is not

wholly inaccurate, but it is one-sided and an appreciation of the other side, that

is, of the Dionysian aspects of sporting culture might lead to a more realistic view

of the likely effectiveness of such schemes.

When reviewing literature surrounding public or social opinion and attitudes

towards using such initiatives for the purpose of rehabilitating drug using

offenders, one does not have to look much further than the recent media

attention drawn on to the front pages of many national and local tabloids

regarding drug using offenders receiving free tickets for premier league football

matches.

This story typifies the position of the media and the subsequent reaction of the

law abiding public towards what they feel is preferential treatment for drug using

offenders. However, the chapter will also attempt to highlight how public opinion

can differ when involved in the debate and a rational explanation is given for this

type of intervention.

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As highlighted in the introduction, after reviewing a broad range of literature

covering the concept, the study will focus on three specific themes.

Firstly the argument surrounding the question ‘Can sport be used as an effective

tool to reduce problematic drug use and offending behaviour? This will be the

main focus of argument that will be explored; however, there are two secondary

discussions that will be highlighted by the study. These are the arguments

around the cost effectiveness of these programmes and the social attitudes, both

public and professional, to this kind of treatment method or intervention. Chapter

six will attempt review the debate and construct a conclusion to the arguments as

best possible from the limited research material available.

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Chapter 3

Methodology

This chapter will outline the progress of the research, the underlying theory of the

preparation, interview styles, transcription, and finally explore the ethical

considerations.

1) Preparation

Whilst preparing the research, it was decided to use a deductive approach, since

it ‘represents the commonest view of the nature of the relationship between

theory and social research’ (Bryman, 2004, p8). It furthermore specifies ‘how

data can be collected in relation to the concepts that make up the hypothesis’

(Bryman, 2004, p8).

A deductive approach was most suitable, due to personally having come across

and been involved in programmes and concepts similar to these prior to writing

this dissertation. Through being actively involved and discussing the concept with

colleagues it was decided to use this debate as a basis for the study and it began

researching into the concept of using sport as an intervention before starting the

interviewing process.

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During the preparation stage, interviewing, and analysing the data, the study has

been influenced by Interpretivism, as it is ‘critical to the application of the

scientific model to the study of the social world’ and views ‘that the subject matter

of the social sciences – people and their institutions – is fundamentally different

from that of the natural sciences. The study of the social world therefore requires

a different logic of research procedure, one that reflects the distinctiveness of

humans as against the natural orders.’ (Bryman, 2004:13). This approach was

particularly helpful when talking to the interviewees and understanding their

points since it emphasises the difference between ‘explanation’ and

‘understanding’ of human behaviour (Bryman, 2004, p13).

I was also aware that I would use an ethnographic approach, since I would

interview colleagues from a work setting. I have also met and spent time with the

clients before I decided to interview them and thus built up a certain degree of

knowledge about their circumstances, and a certain degree of trust so that they

would have no problems and feel rather comfortable in participating in the

research. Ethnography takes place when a ‘researcher is immersed in a social

setting for some time in order to observe and listen with a view to gaining

appreciation of the culture of a social group’ (Bryman, 2004, p267).

2) Sampling

My sample was created by a non-probable convenience sampling strategy. It is

defined as ‘one that is simply available to the researcher by virtue of its

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accessibility’ and has a good response rate (Bryman, 2004, p100). As mentioned

before, I knew the clients I have interviewed through my professional life and

spent some time with them prior to interviewing. The Sports Coaching Staff and

the Substance Misuse professional I interviewed were people who I have worked

along side for some time and throughout the duration of my research.

However, a critique of this type of sampling is that ‘The data will not allow definite

findings to be generated, because of the problem of generalisation, but it could,

and hopefully will, provide a springboard for further debate and research’

(Bryman, 2004, p100).

3) Interviews

This study is based upon a phenomenological approach whilst preparing and

conducting the interviews. Phenomenology is defined as a ‘philosophy that is

concerned with the question of how individuals make sense of the world around

them and how in particular the philosopher should bracket out preconceptions in

his or her grasp of that world’ (Bryman, 2004, p13). Also, this philosophy, as

Interpretivism, recognises the ‘fundamental difference between the subject

matter of the natural sciences and the social sciences’ (Bryman, 2004. p14).

It appreciates that ‘social reality has a meaning for human beings and therefore

human action is meaningful – that is, it has a meaning for them and they act on

the basis of the meanings that they attribute to their acts and to the acts of

others’ (Bryman, 2004, p14). This philosophy is a useful tool to understand and

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interpret my interviewees’ actions from their point, regardless if they are clients or

professionals.

Two slightly different interview guides were designed to focus on the client’s

perspective, and that of the professional’s points of view and attitudes. They

were directed specifically towards the 2nd Chance Programme and the concept of

sport as a tool in both drug treatment and reducing crime. Both interview guides

were of a semi-structured nature; however, the professionals were given more

scope and therefore the interviews were of a slightly more unstructured nature.

In a semi-structured interview the ‘researcher has a list of questions or fairly

specific topics to be covered, but the interviewee has a great deal of leeway in

how to reply’ (Bryman. 2004, p321). Considering the circumstances of the clients

I intended to interview, I felt that a stricter semi-structured guide would give them

more confidence in talking about their experiences, since they felt more

comfortable when confronted with stricter guidelines and given less leeway.

The professional interview guide was slightly more unstructured to give the

professionals the opportunity to dwell or even expand on topics they might

deemed as important or relevant (Bryman, 2004, p321). Though the interview

guides differed slightly, they still gave the interviewees the power to decide to talk

about issues they considered as important or relevant, and the entire interview

became characterised to being more of a conversation (Bryman, 2004, p321).

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This qualitative approach can be a very appealing research strategy, ‘because of

their human character’ (Gillham, 2005, p8). It furthermore is easier to probe and

clarify. Additionally, it gives me, the researcher the opportunity to show

appreciation and understanding, which was particularly important for my clients,

as it encouraged them to talk more openly about their circumstances. This,

furthermore feministic approach, is entirely different from the traditionally male

structured interviewing culture. It allows me to approach participants with a

certain ‘openness’, demonstrate ‘emotional engagement, and the development of

trust’ (Punch, 2006, p173).

Whilst constructing both guides, I paid attention that questions were open and

ordered, and that one question flows reasonably into the other, but yet stayed

flexible enough to alteration. I furthermore considered language issues, and how

I could adopt a language that would be easily understood, especially by clients.

In general, interviews did not take longer than 30 minutes and usually took place

in venues that were familiar to the participants, such as, the sports facilities they

attended or at their local treatment centre. All interviews were audio-recorded

after interviewees gave their consent. The participants had the right of receiving

a transcribed version of their interview, which they indicated on the consent form

(Gillham, 2005, p14). Prior to interviewing the participants were informed of their

rights and confidentiality issues.

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4) Transcription and Coding

As Bryman recommends (2004, p329), I transcribed every interview shortly after

it had taken place. The transcription helped to code the statements appropriately,

and to make sense of the data collected. I transcribed interviews word by word,

but left out exclamations, such as ‘ehm’, and pauses. Neither did I indicate words

that were stressed by the interviewees. However, a big disadvantage of

transcribing data is that the dimensions of speech, such a pauses, emphasis,

tone and pace get lost (Gillham, 2005, p121), which in turn might have an impact

on the meaning of what had been said.

The identity of the participants has been coded for use in referencing and to keep

their anonymity. They have been coded as follows: All the Professionals

interviewed will start with the letter (P) those who are drug workers will be coded

as (PDW) and then their number 1 or 2. Sports Coaches similarly will be coded

(PSC) and then their number. The Clients will be numbered I to 4 and put into

sex. There is only one female interviewee who will be coded (FSU1) while the

male clients will be coded (MSU1), (MSU2) and (MSU3).

5) Analysis

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After transcription carefully and systematically reviewed the data looking for

themes which I had integrated into the semi structured interview questions.

Themes such as, how did you find out about the programme? How do you think

the programme has benefited you? And how would you like to see the

programme develop?

The study could then easily compare the client’s answers and views to gain a

general overview of opinion. (See chapter 6) This method also highlighted any

new issues that may arise. The same approach was adopted for the

professional’s analysis but this time the themes were of a slightly different nature.

Themes such as, their personal and professional opinion on the utilisation of

sports activities in addressing drug misuse and criminal behaviour, or how they

personally would like to see the programme develop, if at all.

The comments from the themes were grouped together and from that it was

easier to gain a broad idea of the views shown. (See chapter 6) By using the

themes it was also easier to gain a general overview and deduce a conclusion

from both the client’s perspective as well a professional’s perspective.

By comparing these findings with those from similar projects using the same

concepts of sport to reduce drug use and crime, I have been able to in some way

triangulate my finding with the purpose of strengthening their validity. However, I

am fully aware that triangulation (multi ways of investigating situations or

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finding) has its pitfalls. Silverman (2000) suggests that this approach

can be ambitious for the student researcher, that it requires time,

personnel resources and verification from participants who might not

be the best to comment on their own actions. Furthermore Silverman

goes on to state that if using this generalisation method that one must

inspect and compare all data till your generalisation is able to apply to every

single gobbet of relevant data you collected. This he calls ‘Comprehensive data

treatment’.

6) Ethical Considerations

Ethics play a mayor role whilst carrying out research. As Gillham stresses (2005,

p10), ‘People are responsive to the apparent interest of an interviewer, and

therein lies the essence of their vulnerability’, furthermore, ‘professional

impersonality seems to facilitate rather than inhibit disclosure’. It shows that

interviewers in general have a great amount of power. However, they should be

aware of that power and handle it with care; otherwise it is easy to exploit and

cause harm to participants.

Whilst preparing, carrying out and evaluating the interviews, I adhered to the 4

main areas of ethical principles, suggested by Diener and Crandall (in Bryman,

2004, p509), which are ‘Harm to participants’, ‘Lack of informed consent’,

‘Invasion of privacy’, and ‘Deception’. Furthermore, I was aware of the ethical

issues I could encounter from the beginning of my research until after the project,

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proposed by Miles and Huberman (in Punch, 2006, pp277-278). The ethical

principles suggested by Diener and Crandall merge into the issues mentioned by

Miles and Huberman, and made me think more thoroughly about my research

and its ethical impacts, especially on clients.

Miles and Huberman’s ethical issues (in Punch, 2006, pp277-278) are divided

into three sub-categories. Early in the project I needed to think about the

worthiness of the project, my personal competence boundaries, meaning if I can

carry out the research personally, how I could ensure informed consent, and

finally, what the benefits, costs and reciprocity are likely to be.

During the project I needed to be aware of the likelihood of risks, and who might

be at risk. Furthermore, I might come across issues of honesty, trust, privacy and

confidentiality, especially since I have spent time with the clients before the

interview and would most likely spend time with them after it. I also needed to

think about issues of anonymity, and how I could provide it.

Lastly, after all interviews had been conducted and transcription had taken place,

I had to think about the research integrity and quality. I had to reflect if the study

was conducted carefully, thoughtfully and correctly, adhering to given ethical

standards. Then, I needed to clarify the ownership of the data and the research’s

conclusions, namely, who owns the collected material, and how would the study

be distributed. Finally, I had to be aware of the possible use and misuse of the

data and results.

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I had to ensure that the data collected was correct and appropriate for me to

use. I also needed to decide if the data collected, regardless if it would be chosen

to be published, would cause harm to that participant or organisation in the

future. (Miles and Huberman, in Punch, 2006:277-278).

As mentioned before, ethics play a big part in carrying out a research study, and I

needed to be aware of ethical issues I could encounter throughout my research.

However, thanks to the support and guidance I have received I could carry out a

research that I believe is congruent with all underlying ethical considerations.

In concluding this chapter this study would advocate the use of realist evaluation

as a methodology for evaluating these types of programmes.

Chapter 4 will now explore in depth the arguments both for and against the use

of sport as an effective tool in combating drug use and crime. However, the

arguments that criticise such programmes are directed more towards the lack of

‘hard’ or significant evidence in support of them rather than the concept itself.

Furthermore, they argue that the rationale behind such programmes is in many

cases, weak and not measurable and until this is addressed it would be incorrect

to make such strong assumptions surrounding the success of such programmes.

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Chapter 4

“Does it Work”?

Little Evidence and Poorly Developed Rationale

The critical question is: do such schemes work? In other words is there any

evidence to suggest that such schemes have a significant impact either on the

amount of illegal drug use by individuals or on their level of criminal activity?

“Sport has an invaluable role to play in improving the health and well-
being of communities. It can make individuals healthier and
communities more vibrant, by reducing health inequalities, lowering
long-term unemployment, cutting crime, and delivering better
qualifications, but also by developing pride among individuals,
strengthening community spirit, and empowering communities so
that they are able to run regeneration programmes themselves”.
RT Hon Richard Caborn MP Cabinet Office (2005:4)

One of many quotes delivered by government ministers in the promotion of sport

to eradicate a multitude of sins. As discussed earlier these concepts fit nicely

with the Labour government’s social inclusion policies (see e.g. Collins and Kay,

2003) and are based on assumptions or rationales such as those discussed by

Nichols (1997) attempts to review the most commonly used rationales which can

be identified as underlying sport as prevention schemes.

Nichols lists the following series of potential rationales:

1 1. Reducing the ability to take part in crime.

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2 2. Meeting a need for excitement.

3 3. Physical fitness.

4 4. Increased self-esteem and sense of control over one’s life.

5 5. The development of cognitive competencies.

6 6. The importance of role models.

7 7. The importance of employment.

Another two, so called, positive key points which are commonly used regarding

the relationship of sport and physical activity reducing drug use and crime are

that they reduce boredom; and decrease the amount of unsupervised leisure

time.

“It was something that you planned ahead Thursday, it was like “oh
Thursday – we’ve got sports that day.” Everyone was looking
forward to it and nobody wanted to miss it.”
(Participating Client 2006 DIP Evaluation)

“It kills time, and it’s a healthy way of killing time. It’s the whole point.
If they’re not engaged in something and doing something then they
will start sitting around getting bored, and boredom leads to mischief
(which) leads to bad habits, and that’s the whole ball game.”
(Participating Worker 2006 DIP Evaluation)

Preventing and reducing boredom is important due to its reported links to

depression, distractibility and loneliness (Coalter et al. 2000; McGiboney & Carter

1988 in Reid et al.1994). In addition, there is consensus that if young people lack

stimulation and have little to do they will seek their own, often antisocial, activities

(Collingwood et al.1992; Crabbe2000; Felson 1998)

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‘It gives us summit to do. It gives us summit to look forward too every
week. Keeps us a bit fitter and keeps me out of trouble, dunnit’?
(MSU 2)

As Nichols (1997:181) notes, these rationales have developed in an ad hoc way;

they are poorly developed on a theoretical level and their relationships with each

another are not clearly articulated. Nichols suggests that it is a matter of concern

that, despite many years of funding for such schemes, no clear rationale has yet

been developed for programmes that use sport as a means of reducing illicit drug

use or criminal behaviour. Does it matter? He points out that we could, adopt the

approach which suggests that such schemes work even if we not understand

why they work. However this approach is inadequate for three reasons. Firstly,

there is no clear evidence that these programmes do indeed reduce drug use or

crime. Secondly one of the reasons for a lack of evidence is the poorly developed

rationale itself. Such a rationale is required in order to justify measuring specific

outcomes of the programme with reference to their impact on drug use and crime

reduction. Thirdly, a clear rationale would inform the design of programmes and

would allow the individual needs of participants to be matched to specific

programmes (Nichols, 1997:182)

There are also other arguments that arising from the claim that participation in

sport leads to improved self-esteem, a claim which has been made in a number

of studies such as, Collins et al (1999), Crabbe (2000), and DCMS (2001).

There are several problems here. Firstly, the increased self-esteem which may

be associated with excellence in sporting achievement is, by definition, only

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attainable by a few and there may be difficulties of readjustment when the

individual loses the capacity to perform sport at an exceptional level. Secondly, it

is in the nature of sport that there are winners and losers; if enhanced self-

esteem is a consequence of winning then what, we may ask, is the impact on the

self-esteem of those who are the losers? In addition, the nature of the alleged

link between enhanced self esteem and reduced levels of drug use criminal

behaviour is by no means clear; indeed, as Crabbe (2000) has pointed out, in

some situations the drug use-crime nexus can itself provide meaning and

purpose in the absence of legitimate structured opportunities and can generate

status and identity in contexts of social and economic exclusion.

Furthermore, there are a number of theoretical reasons why one might be sceptical

about claims about the effectiveness of such schemes. For example one of the

principle reasons why sport is used in drug prevention and treatment interventions

is because people enjoy it.

However, as Crabbe (2000) has noted, this is often for much the same reason that

they might also choose to use illicit drugs, become involved in criminal activity or

even in sport-related violence such as football hooliganism. Crabbe suggests that

‘it is within this context that attempts to draw mutually exclusive boundaries

between sport and drugs use, or “good” and “bad” behaviour, become

problematic’.

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Secondly, Crabbe notes that sport is just one of a range of leisure options and that

the relationship between sport and other leisure options is empirically variable. For

example, football is played by over 2 million people in the United Kingdom, but

they may play football alongside other leisure pursuits which positively promote

drug use and other deviant behaviour; a good example would be the heavy

drinking culture which has traditionally surrounded a number of sports, most

notably rugby and football, in the UK.

Thirdly, Crabbe notes that in terms of the degree to which sport can influence

other forms of behaviour, we need to recognise that the kinds of experiences

which people seek through sport, for example, emotional satisfaction,

exhilaration, confrontation, financial reward, the overcoming of fear and the joy of

celebration can also be achieved through crime and drug use. Indeed, he notes

that, in contrast to those approaches which stress sport’s allegedly wholesome

and socially cohesive nature, it might with equal validity be noted that sport

provides an environment in which ‘acts of violence, confrontation and drug use

may be licensed in ritualised fashion and given meaning through their association

with the hegemonic masculine ideals of toughness, heroism and sacrifice’.

Nichols (2007) reiterates that a variety of previous initiatives aimed at reducing

drug use and crime, have frequently used sport and leisure as a major activity.

However, there is little evidence for the effectiveness of such programmes in

reducing either drug use or crime. For example, Writing in 1990, Robins noted

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that 'research into the relation between sport and delinquency has been virtually

non-existent in the UK' (1990:1). One of the few systematic studies which existed

at that time was that by Coalter (1989) who, following a review of the literature on

the subject was unable to conclude that there is a correlation between high levels

of sports participation and low levels and frequency of delinquency among young

people in the UK. Beyond Coalter's review, however, Robins observed that there

was a dearth of properly conducted and monitored evaluation of schemes where

the reduction of crime via sports participation was a main objective.

It was in this context that Robins critically examined all the major programmes

which had then been set up with the aim of using sport and recreation as part of

a crime prevention strategy. These included a wide variety of schemes — for

example, community development schemes, police schemes and schemes

designed to rehabilitate young offenders - and Robins (1990: 92) concluded that

there was 'little evidence of evaluation of the effect of programmes on young

people' and that, as a consequence, 'information about outcomes was hard to

come by'. He adds that an additional problem, was that none of the programmes

surveyed included a process of follow-up or after-care in their objectives and,

specifically with regard to those schemes which were targeted at convicted

offenders, he noted that information about re-offending patterns, where it was

available, was generally sketchy. He also noted that 'no clear picture of aims and

objectives and their underlying rationales emerge' Robins, (1990: 88). See also

Nichols (2007), Coalter (2007) & Waddington (2000).

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Gratton and Taylor concluded that, 'hard evidence in support of this argument (of

a relationship between involvement in sport and reduction in anti-social

behaviour) is difficult to come by' (1991, p. 66). There are considerable difficulties

in producing 'hard evidence'. Lyng’s (1993) concept of ‘edgework’ and

Csikszentmilhalyi’s and Csikszentmilhalyi’s (1992) ‘sense of flow’ support the

argument that there is no evidence that sport provided a long-term alternative to

the excitement derived from drug use or crime, however they do acknowledge

that this remains an unproven possibility.

Some claim that the inherent benefits of sport are that it improves personal fitness

if one does enough of it, and if one avoids injury. (The Department for Culture,

Media and Sport 2002). It is also associated with good mental health. However, as

noted by Nichols (2007) this still leaves the question of how this relates to drug and

crime reduction. One of the most simplistic explanations for sports programmes

effectiveness in reducing drug use and crime is that while on a programme the

participant is not able to take part in crime at the same time. This obvious

justification of a programme's effectiveness needs to be related to the cost of the

programme in relation to the cost of alternatives, for example, prisons, and the long

term impact of experiences on the participant. A related explanation of why a

programme might reduce crime is if the programme takes place on premises that

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would otherwise be used for, and be the object of, criminal behaviour. (Crabbe, T.

2000; Coalter, F. 2007; Hartmann, D. & Depro, B. 2006; Measham, F. & Aldridge,

J. 1995; Nichols 2007; Parker, H. Ramella, M. 2004; Robins, D. 1990).

For example, a programme in Huddersfield observed by Nichols (1997) offers

after-school activities to young people between the time school activities finish

and 6.0 p.m. This has resulted in a substantial reduction in vandalism to the

school premises. Cost savings from reduced vandalism have exceeded the costs

of running the programme. Merely being involved in a purposeful and legitimate

activity may prevent involvement in crime. Nichols (1997: 3)

Arguments and critique such as these mentioned so far should sound a warning

against making simplistic assumptions about the effectiveness of sporting

participation as a means of combating drug 'abuse' and instantly reducing levels of

crime.

There have been many valid and justifiable arguments put forward in defence of

the arguments that these types of initiatives and in fact the concept itself have little

evidence that it actually works. However, let us now move away from this level of

general scepticism and examine some of the more empirically based studies

conducted within the UK, such as, the 2nd Chance Sports Programme which has

sought to gauge and promote the effectiveness of these programmes.

Those in favour

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Crabbe (2000) analysed the rehabilitative and diversionary elements of the

Leyton Orient Football Club Community Sports Programme in London, the

objective of which was to establish a programme of activity, which would provide

local ex- and stabilised drug users with a range of sporting and personal

development opportunities. Crabbe (2000: 388) concluded, following four months

of observation of the project, that the participants ‘are benefiting from the

alternative focus that the sports activities provide and the need to remain “stable”

that participation requires’.

He noted that several participants, because of their involvement, had obtained

qualifications ranging from junior team managers awards to qualifications in

photography and places on other courses at local colleges. Two of the

participants were subsequently employed on a casual basis in the community

sports programme itself. Crabbe’s evaluation is, on the whole, a positive one,

although his evaluation is based, as is so frequently the case in such schemes,

on the identification of individual participants who have benefited from the

scheme rather than on the analysis of systematically gathered statistical

information, which would provide a more reliable basis for judgements about the

effectiveness of such schemes.

‘Sport can be crucial to the social and personal development of


young people. By participating in sporting activities they can learn to
differentiate between good and bad behaviour’. (Labour Party, 1997)

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As mentioned earlier, the original pilot for the now established 2nd chance

Programme was commisioned by the Home Office (HO) and coordinated by thier

North east Office (GONE). Its implimentation was through the provision of the

The Drug Interventions Programme in conjunction with the 5 North East

Universities. (Teesside, Durham, Sunderland, Newcastle and Northumbia). It has

also been supported by the Football Association who have been actively involved

with the delivering of coaching courses.

The idea was to use sport as a means of increasing client engagement and

helping to effect change in their lives. Initially the work began as a football

programme but now a whole range of sports are available. One of the important

principles is that it is a regular, structured activity, and not a one off tournament

or “afternoon out”. The structure is what helps to build a sense of purpose and

achievement.

Sven Goran Eriksson (The then) England manager says: 'Football can be a

powerful way of reaching and helping people with issues and problems. Positive

Futures is one the schemes that is doing just that. The players, everybody at The

FA and myself are proud to be associated with initiatives making a real difference

to people’s lives. Home Office (2007)

It is commonly perceived by those directly involved with the scheme and those

who supply the bulk of the funding that the programme has already shown that

there is clear evidence that sport and the accompanying improvement in health

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can help to raise self-esteem and self-worth both of which are major deficiencies

in problematic drug users.

It is also argued that achieving fitness and a level of proficiency in a sport can

provide a valuable sense of achievement, creation of networks; personal gain,

such as increased patience, a sense of effectiveness and acquiring new skills or

knowledge (Rhodes et al., 2000) and for a small percentage it can offer

opportunities in volunteering and mentoring which in turn helps towards the

possibility of employment.

It is argued that it offers a strong counter message to drug misuse as sport

teaches a respect for health and the workings of the body which acts as an

excellent cognitive reinforcer for individuals going through drug treatment and

rehabilitation. It also claims that sport and health is an interest for a significant

number of men and women on the programme and can be used as a valuable

adjunct to existing treatment, a positive use of time and something that is

enjoyable and fun.

Furthermore, sport can help individuals to take responsibility, communicate

effectively, overcome barriers and develop social skills (Rhodes et al, 2000)

One of the arguements used to justify this stance is that the appeal of sport and

health can be seen by the fact that many prisoners engage in PE and sports

programmes whilst in prison and experience the positive effects, but only a tiny

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proportion continue with sports activities on release because of the problems of

drug use and social exclusion once they leave prison. Foster (2000)

Hendry et al (1993) found during a recent study of over 10,000 young people in

Scotland, that a significant relationship between participation in sport and

perceived physical and mental health, for males. This was an especially strong

relationship for males involved in team sports although the relationship was not

significant for females. Hendry concluded that:

A considerable body of empirical evidence now exists to support the

idea that an active leisure life can improve overall self-esteem and

mental and physical health. Put simply, leisure has a big part to play

in helping young people to make healthy and successful adjustments

in this phase of their life. Hendry et al (1993:72) cited in Nichols

(1997:184)

Government Office North East (GONE) compiled its first evaluation of the

scheme in the summer of 2006. The evaluation consentrated on the five

individual areas of the North East, however, the findings from all five areas of the

North East were interestingly simular at the time, however, although many of the

fndings from this piece of research maintain the same attitudes and enthusiasm

to the potential of the programme there has been a decline in the levels of

participants experienced in 2006.

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Findings identified that the partnership approach between the DIPs and other

participating drug services and the Universities has been successful with all the

key individuals involved taking an active involvement in the project and working

well together and that the success of the Project is dependent upon collaborative

working between drug service agencies. Also that the linked but separate

provision of drug rehabilitation in a sporting context and the use of sports within

care plans has been extremely attractive to drug service users. (GONE 2006)

The establishment of mutual respect and trust between participants, coaches and

key workers was key to the engagement and retention of the service users over

the eight-week period. The findings indicate that there are clear rehabilitative

benefits to be gained by drug users through involvement in sporting activity.

Sport is attractive to large numbers of service users and can provide a context for

an increased sense of well-being, physical exercise, healthy living, diet

awareness, social engagement, and a range of social and organisational skills

such as punctuality, teamwork, self management, and concentration. (Ibid)

For some drug users, involvement in the Project has provided the basis of an

alternative community with a different set of ‘rules’ to those which govern habitual

drug use - service users commented on the value they placed on the regular

social interaction they experienced in a setting outside of the usual “drugs

context” they normally associate in. However, as we have already observed this

is debatable and can be argued. (Ibid)

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The Programme clearly demonstrated the benefits of using the University and its

students as coaches. For the service users these include a wide range of high

standard sports facilities, an insight into education opportunities and contact with

coaches to answer related questions, the involvement of ‘non’ drug users in the

Programme which “plays down” the drug histories of participants and offers

positive role models as ‘mentors’ for the service users. The University also

benefits by linking in with the Government’s agenda to involve more socially

excluded and undereducated groups in universities. (Ibid)

On a broader scale the Programme has also highlighted the benefits to the wider

community by involving drug service users and University students in the

initiative. This socialisation process has linked in a marginalised and socially

excluded group with a socially privileged group and bridging this gap develops

community cohesion. By retaining drug users in the Programme the initiative has

increased their engagement in services, retained them in treatment, and provided

routes into employment. The secondary benefits to society are found as the

numbers of drug misusing offenders in the community are reduced. (Ibid)

Here are some of the recorded comments from the key Workers and Clients

involved in the programme in 2006. Their comments support strongly the views

of those who argue that sport is an effective tool for reducing drug use and crime

although only one of the clients specifically mentions drug use and crime. The

main theme from these comments is bordom and having something to look

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forward too, which is one of the main arguements used to justify such

interventions.

“A lot of clients want to be more active. Boredom and lack of self-


esteem, self-belief and self-confidence are a major factor in their
problems. The drug is an issue but in many cases not the source of
their problems. Their problem is their mental health and the
environment around them. They need a job, they need somewhere
to live, and they need all sorts of stuff. And it’s not having that that
leads to the drugs or the alcohol misuse in the first place.” (Key
Worker GONE report 2006)

“With sports it gives you something to do, it keeps you off the streets
instead of robbing places or taking drugs or anything like that. It’s
interactive, and it gives you more opportunity to do things in the
future.” (Participating client GONE report 2006)

“It gave us something to do, the boredom was what it was for me -
nay more boredom on a Thursday, it took away the boredom.”
(Participating Client GONE report 2006)

“It gave us something to look forward to each week. It was something


to do and it was exciting.” (Participating Client GONE report 2006)

“Probably the best project I’ve ever heard of like. Definitely.”


(Participating Client GONE report 2006)

“It has made me want to do more sports, yeah, definitely. It’s opened
up a whole load of more opportunities.”
(Participating Client report 2006)

In both the 2006 evaluation and within this study the service users placed a great

deal of emphasis on the benefits they considered sport brought about for them as

individuals. Broadly, the reason fell into six categories which in brief are: sport

motivates; it makes those involved less inclined to use drugs; it increases energy;

it helps individuals to structure time and feel organised; it develops a sense of

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well being and it can be used as tool to engage other drug users in a positive

activity.

Another example of how sports activity can be used in the engagement,

treatment and rehabilitation of drug using offenders comes from the Blenheim

project in London.

‘If Tim Sampey and Terry Swinton had been asked in December
2003 what they would be doing in four years’ time, neither could
have imagined that they would have just celebrated the first
anniversary of a Saturday Social club they helped to set up. At the
time they were both still hooked on heroin and desperately trying to
kick respective 28 and 10- year heroin habits. But after getting
involved with the Blenheim Project in Kensington, the pair began a
journey of recovery which culminated with the former drug users not
only beating their addictions, but also giving something back to the
community. Sampey had talked his mate into playing badminton and
at the following Service Users Drug Group meeting they suggested
setting up a badminton club for people like themselves in recovery.
They were given an initial amount of £500, to buy some rackets,
hired some courts and to start the club’. DDN (2007:1)

‘We felt strongly that the treatment system of the borough was very
good, says Sampey. ‘However at the time there was no aftercare –
and aftercare is vital. ‘When you come off drugs you have a life to
rebuild. If you are abandoned at that point you are bound to go back
onto the drugs. You have time to fill and we wanted to come up with
something that would fill that time.’ DDN (2007:1)

Although this can be used as evidence supporting the positive effect of sport on

specific individuals, it still does not evidence that sport was a major factor in

turning around their lives for the better. Furthermore, the most stanch critics may

argue that if the participants had been stable and motivated enough to organise

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and participate in such an activity they may have been stable and motivated

enough to stop using drugs and committing crime anyway.

The alternative High project run at Hindley Prison and Young Offender Institution

also professes to have a successful programme. Professional instructors had

been brought in and began to teach a group of teenage inmates how to climb a

wall. The concept was to combine physical activities with essential life skills, such

as team building, problem solving, concentration and focusing skills.

Emily Thomas, Hindley YOI’s head of reducing re-offending, said: ‘This is an

excellent initiative for Hindley that will have very positive benefits for the young

people we care for.’ While longer outcomes of the programme will need to be

monitored, staff at Hindley are satisfied that the two-month programme fulfilled its

aims. ‘We can say with some certainty that as the programme has progressed,

each individual has gained confidence and developed new skills, says Graham

Smith. ‘Their progress becomes evident to them when they read their own

weekly accounts of their experiences.’ DDN (2007:2)

‘I found it really exciting. It was interesting learning new skills and I


liked the teamwork. I feel I've achieved something and learnt things I
wouldn't have done before. It showed me ways of enjoying myself
without taking cannabis or cocaine.
(Alternative High Participant 2007)

‘I learned different things like rock climbing and team work. I feel glad
that I've done it as it’s improved my confidence. When I get out I
would definitely do something like that again if I got chance, but
before doing this I wouldn't have wanted to’.

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(Alternative High Participant 2007)

Another interesting point that has arisen whilst reviewing the effectiveness of

these schemes, is that there are indications that a key factor in the success or

failure of projects was accredited to the personalities of the coordinator and the

other professional staff drawn in to work on the project. Specifically, Davis and

Dawson (1996:30) suggested that it is important that project workers should have

‘authority’ in the eyes of the participants attending these projects but it was also

important that they should not be seen as authority figures; their authority must

lie in relevant knowledge and practice and it is also important that project leaders

have a high level of skill in the core activity (see also Coalter, 2001; Collins and

Kay, 2003; McCormack, 2001; Ramella, 2004).

This chapter has examined the argument both for and against and it concludes

that there is a strong argument in favour of the use of sport in combating drugs

and crime. However, it also concludes that the argument against is not so much

against the concept but more the lack of ‘hard’ the evidence and weakness of

their rationale. Chapter 5 will examine and comment on the research data

collected from both the client and professional interviews.

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Chapter 5

Review of interviews

The Professionals view

This Chapter will review the research collected from the semi structured interview

of both Professionals and clients. The study will focus on the themes previously

identified, review the comments and make a general conclusion before a final

summary of the findings

All professionals stated that they had become involved with the programme due

to there job role. The University coaching staff had been directed to assist in the

development and implementation of the programme as part of the Universities

community engagement policy. The workers both welcomed the challenge and

saw it as part of their as community sports coaches.

As for the drug worker, they both became involved due to the initial programme

being rolled out as a DIP initiative with the DIP teams given sole responsibility to

get the programme up and running. Although the workers welcomed the initiative

here where issues around the extra work load heaped upon them and also as the

programme was too implemented and developed with no additional funding or

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support from government office. This automatically raised eye brows and caused

some friction amongst colleagues and other drug service.

Professionals interviewed had some form of previous experience from working

with similar concepts;

‘In a previous life I worked for the national probation service that ran
a similar scheme as part of semi structured activities on the old
DTTO programme. Sport as ever, particularly football, is very popular
with our client group and seems to work well in occupying their time
in a constructive way’.

‘I have been involved in football projects to engage with hard to


reach groups previously when working for the National Association
for the Care and Rehabilitation of Offenders (NACRO). Football was
a popular method for engaging with disaffected young males’ (PDW
2)

When asked how it had benefited their services, there was a marked difference

between the coaching staff and the drug workers around this question although

all gave positive responses. However the coaching staff focused more on the

student participation and the image of the university, where as the drug workers

looked at the benefits to their own practice and services.

‘The benefit is to the students as it gives them an opportunity to work


with groups that they would not normally work with and wider their
social awareness. Good for the university around a PR point of view
and also to attract funding’.
(PSC 1)

‘It has most definitely given me a well needed option for a structured
activity and an opportunity to engage with some of my clients in a
different enviroment. As for the service it has given all workers the

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same benefits of engaging with their clients and has given the
service a positive activity to promote itself’. (PDW 2)

‘I firmly believe that all of the clients which I have nominated to the
scheme over the duration of the project have benefited from the
scheme. I think the most reoccurring positive feedback which I hear
from my clients is that it has given them something constructive to do
and it has broken the monotony of everyday. (PDW 1)

Interestingly, when asked how they would like to see the programmes develop

there seemed to be a consensus that the programme should and would evolve

by utilising more service user involvement. The use of mentor and volunteer

support was also highlighted in the future success of the programme.

‘Piloting a mentoring and work experience scheme. I think the


programme evolves itself over time and from this you find out what
changes are required’. (PSC 1)

‘I passionately believe that the programme should be directed and


led by service users which will be integral to the programmes long
term success’ (PDW 1)

Other views on this question focused on a wider range of activities, a review of

the travelling and logistical issues and a more coordinated wider ranging

programme which could be rolled out throughout the country.

Funding, time constraints and commitment run through the majority of

professional responses in regard to barriers preventing development, however

there is also mention of logistics again and public perception which we will be

looking at later in this dissertation.

‘Time constraints on the staff currently working on the programme as


one to one support is important and money is always an issue’
(PSC 1)

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‘Funding, high level commitment and commitment from the front line
staff to continue with the work already implemented. It is imperative
that the belief, motivation and commitment continue from front line
staff as without this the whole pack of cards falls down’. (PDW 2)

‘Most definitely. I think as a sector we probably have a very long way


to go before public perceptions of schemes like this begins to
change’. (PDW 2)

‘Restrictions on funding have meant that no additional private buses


could be hired to fill this void’ (PSC 2)

The overwhelming response was positive in regard to the benefits of the

programme. It is also very much the same opinion generated from the vast

majority of similar projects, programmes and initiatives researched

recently, such as, the GONE report (2006) Positive Futures review (Sport

England 2002), the Splash Scheme (2001) and the Summit Programme

(2002). However, as debated in depth earlier there is a lack of concrete

evidence to justify these presumptions.

‘The scheme clearly provides constructive activities for clients to


engage in, which it could be argued is keeping them out of crime, at
least whilst they are at the scheme!!

‘I feel the scheme has also given a lot of clients the opportunity to
discover attributes they probably thought they didn’t possess, both
physical and emotional’...

‘I feel the scheme has breathed confidence and improved self


esteem into the clients and has enabled them to review their own
lives, and in some cases has triggered thoughts and actions about
real sustainable change’

.‘The positives of sports initiatives have been well documented. The


concept can be linked to motivating individuals towards change, lift
their self respect and esteem. Improve both mental and physical

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health and relieve boredom which is commonly linked to drug use


and criminal activity’. These sorts of programmes are good for
engaging hard to reach groups and give the worker an opportunity to
establish a stronger relationship due to sharing interests and
experiences. I feel workers should, if wanted, participate and share
the experience with their clients’.

‘Positive for clients as we can see marked improvement of their life


skills in a majority of the cases, good feed back from majority of
clients, gives them something to do and keeps them busy and
focused. Also it breaks down barriers and preconceptions’.

A for the negative aspects of the programme, the burden on a small group

of individuals such as the DIP team and the university coaching staff

seems to be a worrying and negative factor felt by the professionals.

There is also a worry that without wider support from all drug services and

a larger commitment from both staff and clients it may disappear.

‘As I said earlier, I feel that other organisations within our field need
to be playing a more significant part. I sense that because it was
the DIP who played such a crucial role in setting up and
implementing the scheme, it seems the perception that the DIP is
purely responsible for the scheme has stuck.
Probation, NECA, NHS Trust, DAAT and others all need to be
adding their influence and finance to the scheme.

‘If it does not develop there is a risk that it will just fizzle out which
will be very deflating and demoralising for those who have been
regular core participants. The concept, although fantastic for those
who enjoy it only targets and benefits those who enjoy sport. What
is there for those who don’t? The programme is currently
dependent on a few passionate people who believe in it and with
out their enthusiasm may again just fizzle out.

There seemed to be an overwhelming and unanimous consensus among all the

professionals that sport is an effective tool for combating both drug use and the

subsequent crime related to it. There is also an agreement that it is a cost

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effective method in relation to prison but how cost effective is debateable. There

is importantly mention to the human and social costs which are difficult if not

impossible to measure.

‘Yes, most definitely! This is a great intervention and one which


needs to be developed, expanded and improved to accommodate
a greater number of service users. It should be open to all service
users offering a wide range of activities. As for cost effectiveness, I
think that by engaging with these individuals and by supporting
them there is a far greater chance that they will address their drug
using and offending behaviour than by incarcerating them and
excluding them from society. You have to look at the human cost
and not just at the monetary costs although I do believe that the
cost of such schemes will out way the cost on both the criminal
justice sysem and the national health service for which this group
are currently a massive burden’.

‘Confidence and self esteem, breads confidence and self esteem,


so I think the repeated involvement in constructive activities in a
positive and controlled environment can only be a good thing for
our client group. The project is one of a number of important
wheels in the cog of self discovery and recovery. In terms of cost
effectiveness it would depend on what the assessment criteria was.
If it were to be examined on the basis of reductions in the
acquisitive crime levels of each of the clients involved, then I would
suggest that it would not warrant further funding, but then
realistically speaking, you could never expect the scheme to
achieve large reductions in the acquisitive crime levels in the first
place. In terms of proving a venue for our clients to take part in
positive constructive activities, where they can learn new skills,
gain qualifications and improve their self esteem, and of course do
this all for free, then in that respect, I feel the scheme has been
tremendously successful and should certainly warrant further
funding’.

After listening to the professionals and evaluating there comments the study can

conclude that they overwhelmingly believe that this programme is benefiting

there clients and in doing so is benefiting society in general. They feel that it is an

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important part of a package of treatment working towards the reduction of drug

use and the client’s involvement in acquisitive crime. There is a genuine belief

that it improves both the client’s physical and mental health including lifting self

esteem and confidence. During the interviews the commitment and passion

shown by the workers was more than evident which is exceptionally difficult to

measure or document but essential when trying to understand how and why

these types of scheme work.

The Clients view

As with the professional interviews this study will examine the research data

focusing on themes of agreement or areas of discourse. After reviewing and

commenting on the responses given the study will attempt to end this section by

constructing a conclusion from the research findings.

All clients recorded that their first knowledge of the 2nd chance programme came

from their key workers at their local treatment centres. Interestingly (MSU 2)

mentions that this contact with the programme encouraged him to attend the

treatment centre more regularly after joining the programme.

‘My key worker at the treatment centre told me about it and she
picked me up and took me to the bus the first time I went’ (MSU 1)

‘Me mate said about it first like, then I met the workers on the bus
and then I started too got to the treatment centre more regular’.

Surprisingly, none of the clients interviewed had experienced any similar sporting

programmes since leaving school other than the use of the gym facilities whist in

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prison. This highlights a justification for such programmes as there seems to be a

gap in leisure opportunities especially for this client group.

‘No, nowt like this, I’ve done sports at school and stuff but nowt like
this’.

‘I’ve been involved with this a couple of year but that’s all like’.

‘No, nowt like this, I wish there was more like this. I could do with
cumin’ here every day like’.

‘No, I’ve never been involved in anything like this, no since school
when we did different stuff. I think it’s a really good thing coz there’s
nothing round here to do especially if you’re on drugs. They should
do it more like every day not just once a week’.

The overwhelming response when asked what the 2nd chance programme has

done for them was that of relief from boredom which again confirms the general

consensus of results from other similar projects and programmes, such as the

GONE report (2006) Positive Futures review (Sport England 2002), the Splash

Scheme (2001) and the Summit Programme (2002). There is also a theme of

socialising and the physical health improvements again supporting the

arguments from previous research.

‘Dunno really, I suppose it gives me summit to do which stops me


thinking about drugs. I’ve met lots of people too and it’s keepin’ me
fitter. I just like doin’ it, that’s all’.

‘It gives us summit to look forward to and gets us out of the house,
like I said I wish there was more like this around our way for
everybody to use, especially me and me mates’.

‘It’s helped us socialise more and get us out the house, its given us a
goal about what I want to do with me self and everything, coz I
wanna do the football coaching course, refereeing course and look

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for like jobs and that. The coaching courses are summit I deffo
wanna do coz I missed out last time on it’.

‘Gives us summit to do, like on a Thursday, know what I mean,


coming through and playing football or using the gym or sometimes
trampolining and other stuff’.

Again, when asked how they would like to see the programme develop the

general consensus was for more time dedicated on these sports activities. The

majority would like the programme to run on a daily basis and with a wider range

of activities available. There is also consensus for more localised activities to

avoid travelling and a notable interest in more varied activities not just the

conventional sports activities available at the university or a leisure centres such

as; go-carting, white water rafting and rock climbing.

‘I’d make it every day me, and I’d do it in Peterlee coz that would
make it easier and save money for the bus which we could use on
other stuff. I’d like to do more tournaments other places so we meet
other people and see other places. I’d also get more choices for stuff
to do’.

‘I’d like it to be every day and near me house, so I didn’t have to


travel so far. I’d like to go on more days out like the climbing and the
rafting we’ve been on and I’d like to do some go-carting and paint-
balling stuff, that’s what’.

‘I’d do a bit more outings, you know more outings, the lads wanna do
some other things an all which would be go but for me just a few
more outings. I enjoy it the way it is really, maybe twice a week or
more’.

‘I’d do it so we could come every day and that there was more things
going on like more stuff for the girls coz not all the girls like footie, I
do but some don’t and there should be stuff for them. I’d also go on
more trips coz they are mint, especially the white water rafting, mint’.

Most of the negative comments are in fact positive comments towards the

programme. The negative aspects mentioned are that it is only on one day a

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week and that the numbers participating should be increased. Again the fact that

they would like a wider variety of activities is a positive comment towards the

justification of the programme. One observation for consideration should be the

comment regarding more and a wider range of activities for female clients. This is

an area which both the 2nd chance programme and all other initiatives using a

similar concept should accommodate for.

‘Don’t like the way there getting less people coming coz they might
stop it if there aint enough people coming. Another thing is I’d like to
do some different stuff and like I said before I’d like to have every
day’.

‘Not really, only that it’s not on enough and that it’s a bit far away
from my house. Maybe that more people should be coming, coz
there used to be loads more every week but they’ve stopped
coming’.

‘No, it’s done great for me, nothing at all; the people are great and
that’.

‘More stuff and more stuff for girls like they do in Sunderland, that
scheme sounds mint and we would love summit like that’.

The positive aspects of the programme highlighted by the clients are again

similar to that of the professionals and that of clients participating in previous

research studies around the affect of sport on drug use and crime. The first

comment from (MSU1) is an incredibly strong statement in support of those who

argue that this type of intervention does have a significant effect in the treatment

of problematic drug users and subsequently reducing their criminal behaviour.

‘Keeps me out of bovver dunnit? This is one of the main arguments but it also

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raises the issue of boredom which again is a theme throughout the client

interviews and the link between boredom and subsequent drug use and crime.

There is again reference to socialising and the chance to get a qualification.

Notably there is little reference hear or through the other questions as to the

health improvement issues. This seems not to be prioritised as highly as relieving

boredom or meeting new friends.

‘Keeps me out of bovver dunnit? (laugh) no, seriously its good coz it
gives ya summit to do and stuff you like so that keeps your mind off
all the other stuff going on. I’ve met some mates and got a bit fitter
which has also been a good thing. I get come out and come to
Durham, it’s really nice here and the people are nice too’. (MSU 1)

‘It gives us summit to do. It gives us summit to look forward too every
week. Keeps us a bit fitter and keeps me out of trouble, dunnit’?
(MSU 2)

‘Everyone gets along, it’s a good day or a couple of hours out, I really
enjoy cumin’ and never miss it’. (MSU 3)

‘Meeting people and getting out, doing stuff that’s good for you and
stops you getting bored. I’ve also done my level 1 coaching badge
and I wouldn’t have done that if it wasn’t for this programme’. (FSU
1)

Overwhelmingly the clients questioned believe that this and other programmes

with similar aims are most definitely beneficial to both reducing drug use and

criminal activity. The alleviation of boredom is again mentioned directly or

indirectly through the responses and is seemingly developing into the main issue

affecting the clients interviewed.

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Yeah deffo, it’s like when you’re in jail and you go to the gym all the
time which makes you feel good and takes your mind off all the crap
that’s going on. If I wasn’t here I’d be at home bored, probably think
about drugs or go out with me mates and get up to all sorts of stuff.
This gives us summit else to do that’s why I want it every day then I’d
stop getting into bovver and help with using the drugs’. (MSU 1)

‘Course they do, that’s what they are here for innit? It keeps you out of
grafting coz that’s what you do when you’re bored and on the gear.
Since I’ve been going to ESMI I’ve been off the gear and stuff like this
keeps us busy so I don’t go back on it’. (MSU 2)

‘Definitely, definitely, like me self and the other lads have played
football all our lives and this is getting us back it to it so it is really
good, definitely. Any thing beats going to jail or getting it trouble so it’s
good yeah! (MSU 3)

‘Yeah, I think so, coz it gives you something to look forward to and is
always there even when you are feeling bad. The people are nice and
I think that if these things where there every day I think it would help a
lot of people’. (FSU 1)

When asked about what other activities they would be interested in the response

can again be perceived as a positive one as the clients seemed to want more

activities to build on the current programme format. However, some of the ideas

are although interesting somewhat unlikely in the current climate due to them

being expensive and also may not be practical especially as they are not main

stream activities. Although, Pool and Snooker are relatively inexpensive as is

fishing and would give both the client and the key worker the ability to spend

some quality time together which could be beneficial in building their relationship.

I’m nuts me, i’d like to go rock climbing on real mountains not just
indoors although that was ok. I’d like to do go-karting, is that a sport?
Well i’d like to do that and sailing or rowing. We talked about just doing
snooker or pool, some of the lads used to go but its nt on any more.
Maybe they can do more indoor sports like that as well. Any thing
really, its worth trying them if you haven’t tried them before and then
you can choose afterwards, cant ya’? (MSU 1)

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‘More footie would be good and I like swimming too. Me and the lads
here have talked about going on a weekend camping trip or doing
some outward bounds stuff. I like fishing but I don’t know if they would
wanna do that like. (MSU 2)

‘More things for girls and more trips out, like to the white water rafting
or rock climbing. I’d like to learn to drive; do you think they will do that?
No, more trips out, maybe camping or visiting other programmes’.
(FSU 1)

After reviewing the results of the research this study concludes that there is an

overwhelmingly positive response to the 2nd chance programme and the general

concept of using sports activities as part of a drug treatment programme. As with

other studies the issue of relieving boredom has been highlighted by both

workers and clients, furthermore, the general consensus is that it is a coast

effective method for combating drug use and crime.

The following chapter will delve deeper into the discussion around cost

effectiveness of both these programmes and drug treatment in general. It will

also examine social attitude and public opinion towards these rehabilitative

initiatives.

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Chapter 6

1) Cost Effectiveness

The cost of crimes committed by the high-rate offenders accounted for 95 per

cent of the total crime costs NTORS (2005:3).There were many economic

benefits from drug treatment, based solely on costs of crime. The reduced costs

of crime during and after treatment substantially outweighed the costs of

treatment and demonstrated the value of addiction treatment. Even without the

numerous other tangible and intangible benefits in addition to the reductions in

costs of crime to society, the financial costs of treating drug dependent patients

provide a return that more than justified the cost of treatment.

‘As for cost effectiveness, I think that by engaging with these


individuals and by supporting them there is a far greater chance
that they will address their drug using and offending behaviour than
by incarcerating them and excluding them from society. You have
to look at the human cost and not just at the monetary costs
although I do believe that the cost of such schemes will out way the
cost on both the criminal justice sysem and the national health
service for which this group are currently a massive burden’.
(PDW 2)

The increased spending on treatment yielded an immediate cost saving in terms

of the reduced victim costs of crime, as well as cost savings within the criminal

justice system. Initial calculations based upon savings associated with victim

costs of crime and reduced demands upon the criminal justice system, estimated

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that for every extra £1 spent on drug misuse treatment, there was a minimum

return of more than £3 in terms of savings to the economy. NTORS (2005:3)

However, this figure is one of much debate and some observers believe it to be

as high as £9 in terms of savings to the economy. (Ettner et al (2006). French et

al (2004). Godfrey, Stewart & Gossop (2004). Koenig et al (2005).

Other research has produced similar findings. The National Treatment Outcomes

Research Study (NTORS) compiled by the National Treatment Agency (NTA) the

Home Office (HO) and the Department of Health (DH) concluded that the

economic costs imposed upon society by the NTORS cohort were largely due to

their criminality. Crime costs made up a substantial proportion of the total

economic costs of addiction, where as direct addiction treatment costs accounted

for only six per cent of costs. Other studies of drug treatment have found that the

benefits vary dramatically and can be between 2.8 and 18 times greater than the

costs (Ettner et al, (2006). French et al. (2004) Godfrey, Stewart, & Gossop,

(2004). Koenig et al. (2005).

Detailed calculations of the crime costs after NTORS treatments were made both

in terms of offences and client contacts with the criminal justice system (arrests,

court appearances, prison stays etc). Both methods yielded similar results with

considerable reductions in crime costs after treatment. Health and social care

costs were relatively small in comparison. The reductions in offences were

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associated with a drop in crime costs from £5.8m before treatment to £1.8m at

one year follow-up.

‘In terms of cost effectiveness it would depend on what the


assessment criteria were. If it were to be examined on the basis of
reductions in the acquisitive crime levels of each of the clients
involved, then I would suggest that it would not warrant further funding,
but then realistically speaking, you could never expect the scheme to
achieve large reductions in the acquisitive crime levels in the first
place’. (PDW 1)

Costs to the criminal justice system are only one element of the costs of crime

and the true cost savings to society are greater than these crime-focused

estimates. The fear of crime impacts on individuals and communities. Fear of

crime may lead to increased expenditure as individuals or businesses spend

more on increased and more advanced security measures. Furthermore, ad

more importantly there is the cost to the user themselves such as, their physical

and mental health and well being.

The cost is not only enormous in monetary terms but also in the price to

civilisation in terms of human dignity. The National Institute on Drug Abuse

(NIDA) states, According to several conservative estimates, every $1 invested in

addiction treatment programs yields a return of between $4 and $7 in reduced

drug-related crime, criminal justice costs, and theft alone. When savings related

to health care are included, total savings can exceed costs by a ratio of 12 to 1.

With such savings possible it is hard not to justify increased drug treatment

programs and initiatives. NIDA (2000:57)

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Other cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit studies carried out in the US have also

shown that drug treatment was cost-effective and cost-beneficial in terms of

crime reduction effects. In most cases, the cost of treatment was recouped

during treatment, with additional cost-benefits as a result of reduced post-

treatment drug use. (ibid)

‘Weighed up with the cost of keeping a prisoner in jail for a year or


the high cost of extended treatment the 2nd chance programme is
value for money’.(PSC 1)

This study draws attention to the fact that all of these cost-benefit studies

examined ''effectiveness" from a societal point of view and found treatment to be

a wise public investment. However, studies did not address critical questions

facing providers regarding the most cost-effective treatments. There are only a

few studies comparing the relative cost-effectiveness of different treatments.

NTORS (2005) also see Bean & Nemitz (2004)

Furthermore, it is worthy to note that where monitoring and evaluation processes

are built in to ‘sport in the community programmes’, they tend to be applied rather

inconsistently and the emphasis is often placed upon demonstrating the ‘benefits’

afforded individual participants on the programme and not the cost effectiveness

of the programme itself. (See e.g. Crabbe, 2000; Long et al., 2002; Nichols,

2004; Ramella, 2004; Robins, 1990; Sport England, 2002).

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Assuming the consensus of the vast majority who support the theory that

treatment is a cost effective method of combating problematic drug use and

crime is correct, then we must assume that sports interventions initiates as part

of the treatment programme must also be a cost effective tool, or should we?

One of the most basic theories often used to explain the benefits of sports

activities in reducing problematic drug use and especially crime is that while they

(the participants) are actively involved in a sports activity, they cannot be out

committing crime or using drugs. However, this obvious justification of a

programme's effectiveness needs to be related to the cost of the programme in

relation to the cost of alternatives, for example, prisons, and the long term impact

of experiences on the participant. A related explanation of why a programme

might reduce crime is if the programme takes place on premises that would

otherwise be used for, and be the object of, criminal behaviour.

‘The cost effective side of the question I am not so sure about as I


don’t know all the figures, though I do feel that sometimes our
programme isn’t cost effective when we hire buses and 2 people are
on them and then we hire coaches to deliver sessions and only 3
people turn up to those sessions. But on the other hand if those 3
people are getting their lives back on track and are not taking up time
through use of emergency services, prison and probation services
and eventually they get back into work and start paying taxes then
that can only be a good thing’. (PSC 4)

This study would recommend that future programmes develop and adopt a more

rigorous evaluation system which will be able to justify the cost effectiveness and

benefits of the respective scheme. This study will suggest that larger scale

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quantitative studies be undertaken to support the strong body of qualitative

research already available.

One way this might be achieved is by matching a large number of programme

participants with a control group of non-participants and comparing reconviction

rates of both groups. This method, and the use of a reconviction predictor score

developed by the Home Office, has been previously used by Nichols & Taylor

(1996: 59-65) in evaluation of a sports programme with probation service clients.

This study would also suggest that the aims and objectives be determined as to

what is to be focused upon such as, crime reduction rates or retention in

treatment states. If however it is the quality of life and the well being of the client

that is the focus then this needs to be highlighted as the main objective and

evaluated appropriately.

The study will now examine social attitude and public opinion towards these

programmes. It will examine how those opinions are influenced by the

government and the media, as well as, how these opinions influence the

development and funding of these rehabilitative programmes and initiatives.

2) Social Attitude and Opinion

The Wall of Exclusion, as mentioned by Buchanan, J. (2004) is not a phase but a

barrier that makes it extremely difficult for recovering drug users to become

accepted into the structures and networks of everyday life. The propaganda

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designed to deter people from trying illegal drugs by portraying drug users as a

deviant enemy has led to a war on drug users themselves. This has resulted in

discrimination at every level. Buchanan (2004) goes on to stress that for many

drug users relapse is not attributable simply to the physical craving or a change

in motivation, but as a consequence of their frustration at trying to break into

mainstream community life and finding themselves constantly shunned and

excluded. At the very time when recovering drug users need assistance and

support from the non-drug-using population to establish alternative patterns of

social and economic life, they are often prevented by the wall of exclusion.

There seems to be some evidence that programmes can and do change the

attitudes of those involved in regard to the drug service user client group. In their

interview, Sports coach 2 (PSC 2) discusses the affect that the 2nd chance sports

programme had on the university students involved in the scheme;

‘Mixing with a client group that many of them would never have had
the opportunity to do in any other setting, this has led them to
question and understand some social issues that arise in
communities’. (PSC 2)

They go on to discuss how the programme has affected their personal attitudes

and opinions;

‘It has made me personally more aware of what goes on outside of


my circle of friends. It has challenged many views that I held about
drug use and how recovering drug users can be reintegrated into
society and the support that they can access along the way’. (PSC 2)

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However, it is increasingly recognised that a major barrier to receipt of optimal

clinical care by clients with alcohol and drug related problems is the stigma

attached to these behaviours and any associated problems. The stigmatised

nature of this area of work is reflected in views about the deservingness of clients

for high quality and timely care. Yet, in spite of the common understanding of the

pervasive nature of stigma in relation to Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) matters,

relatively little systematic effort has been directed to addressing this pivotal issue.

Drug worker 1 when interviewed had some very strong feelings about this issue;

‘I think as a sector we probably have a very long way to go before


public perceptions of schemes like this begins to change’. (PDW
1)

.
‘I also feel strongly that public perceptions of the programme needs
to be improved, how we achieve that I am not quite sure, but recent
sensationalist and blatantly biased media coverage of the
programme, particularly the issues related to the awarding of premier
league football tickets for been successful on the programme needs
to be addressed’.(PDW 1)

The issue of the football tickets referred to here is a perfect example of how the

media can manipulate a relatively small innocent issue and turn it in to National

front page news. For sometime now the 2nd chance programme had been

rewarding those clients who had either been awarded the FA’s level 1 coaching

award which they had taken on the programme or achieved a high level of

attendance and been actively and positively involved with the programme with

complimentary tickets to selected Newcastle United Premier League matches.

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This had only been possible via government office north east having four season

tickets which they offer to various deserving groups or individuals. As the 2 nd

chance programme has very close links with GONE they were offered tickets four

times a year.

Some how one of the local news papers got to hear of this practice, immediately

turning a positive reward scheme into social uproar by using articles and

headlines such as this from the Northern Echo. TNE (22/03/2008:1-3)

‘JUNKIE THUGS GIVEN FREE PREMIER LEAGUE TICKETS’

DRUG addicts in the area are being given free tickets to Premier League football

matches as an incentive to beat their addictions. Repeat offenders seeking

treatment for alcohol and drug addictions have gained sought-after tickets to

league games including the Newcastle United and Sunderland clash this

weekend. Community workers said the incentive helped reintegrate addicts to

society. But the scheme was criticised as being a "reward" for people who should

be punished. (ibid)

The tickets were given by Newcastle United to the Government Office North East

(GONE), to be distributed to drug and alcohol action teams in the region. The

teams can then hand the tickets to addicts seeking to tackle their problems, even

to hardened criminals classed as prolific and priority offenders.

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A Government Office North- East spokesman said: ‘The tickets were given only

to those who had shown a "genuine commitment to living a normal, structured

life", and were not a reward’.

He said: "As part of their work in the community, for more than ten years,

Newcastle United Football Club has provided, free of charge and at their

instigation, four season tickets to frontline drug support services”.

"The tickets are provided on the understanding that they are used as part of a

package of measures to particularly help young people, who have had substance

misuse problems, and are making clear progress and showing a genuine

commitment to living a normal, structured life. The tickets are shared throughout

the region via frontline drug support services."

Government Office North- East declined to give details of how many tickets had

been given to serious offenders, but said addicts had their travelling expenses

paid and were accompanied by a support worker.

North East MEP Martin Callanan questioned the validity of the scheme, saying:

"What about people who didn't get into trouble in the first place, who live their

lives, Work hard and pay their taxes? The MEP Martin Callanan continued:

"People in society want to see wrong behaviour punished. I am not convinced it

is a good thing." TNE (2008)

This story became national news within a matter of days and sparked a string of

comments from the public via letters to the news papers, radio phone-ins and TV

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interviews. Some comments posted on the Northern echo website show the

general feeling of outrage and discourse voiced by the general public.

A disgrace! ‘These people took drugs by choice, why should I pay


tax to reward them for trying to kick the habit’?

‘So thats where all the ttaxes i pay goes to, if these people were
publicly flogged im sure it would be a detterent for others to get
onto drugs in the future,but no that wont happen in case we go
against their human rights’.

This is a disgrace, hardworking people have to pay high prices for


football tickets, drug addicts should not be given free tickets’.

This is exactly whats wrong with the world today. What does the kid
who's never missed a day at school or gotten into trouble get?
Probably bullied by the louts getting the free football tickets

There was very little support, if any, from the public responce and also a general

feeling of frustration and even anger from those who are connected to the

programme. This was mainly due to the way in which the matter had been

portrayed but also that GONE had not stood its ground and used the opputunity

as a platform for a public ebate on the issues of rehabilitating problematic drug

users and offenders.

There was a general consensus between both professional and clients that the

matter was an embarrassment to GONE and Newcastle United which they

wished would disappear sooner rather than later. It also seems unlikely that

these complimentary tickets will be available to the 2nd chance programme for

the coming season.

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The issue of the tickets has been a good example of both the media’s view and

that of the general public, however, there is much more to this issue than football

tickets.

‘Where drugs such as heroin and crack-cocaine are concerned, the


most serious concentrations of human difficulty are invariably found
huddled together with unemployment, poverty, housing decay and
other social disadvantages’. Seddon (2006)

Seddon’s observation leads to the question as to whether the social and public

opinion highlighted above is directed at problematic drug using offenders or to all

of those who for what ever reason find themselves socially excluded in the

community.

Furthermore, it may not only be the general public that have less than positive

attitudes towards problematic drug users. There is a belief that there may also be

some differing attitudes amongst social and health care workers such as nurses

and social workers, especially when the clients are also involved in the criminal

justice system.

A report from the National Centre for Education and Training on Addiction

NCETA (2006) suggests that many factors impact on a health professionals’

willingness to intervene with individuals who use illicit drugs, such as heroin or

cocaine. These factors include knowledge, training, organisational policies and

procedures and previous positive or negative experiences. Attitudes towards

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drug users represent one factor within this wider set that may impact on health

professionals’ responses to individuals with problematic drug use.

There may be issues regarding deservingness of medical care. High quality

medical care is a positive and valuable experience. Drug use is generally

perceived to be a negative behaviour, especially high risk drug use, such as,

binge drinking or heroin use. Individuals are often perceived to be responsible for

their drug use i.e., it is a behaviour they have chosen to engage in. This situation

contains all the ingredients for a judgement that high quality medical care may

not be deserved by individuals with drug- or alcohol-related problems.

Judgements of deservingness might manifest themselves in the following types

of attitudes:

“Drug users don’t deserve medical treatment as much as other people.”

“It’s their own fault that they are experiencing problems.”

“They chose to use the drug and now they have to live with the consequences.”

Deservingness judgements reflect beliefs concerning social justice, what is a fair,

just and appropriate outcome for oneself and others. NCETA (2006:4-5)

In countries that wage war on the enemy of illegal drugs, those who are given the

label ‘druggie’ or ‘smackhead’ find themselves not only socially marginalised and

isolated, but subject to hostility and distrust. The war on drugs is a war on drug

users, a civil war against an enemy within (Buchanan & Young 2000).

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This observation and those already highlighted suggest that when Tony Blair

waged war on drugs in 2000, we as a society did so too.

Public opinion, though largely ill – informed seems predominantly in favour of

tough actions such as prison and punishment and not understanding and support

for rehabilitating drug users and offenders. The attitudes and opinions of the

media are a major factor in how the public react to individuals with any addiction

but especially when relating to illicit drug use.

So called ‘Soft options’ such as the 2nd chance programme are deemed unfair to

the majority of citizens who have to pay for these activities out of their own

pocket are angered when these privileges are seen as rewarding drug use and

crime. Further more the fact that these so called privileges are paid for out of tax

payers money further infuriates their opinions.

A press release from the UK Treasury Department announcing £300 million to

fight drugs stated; hardly a family is unaffected by the evil of drugs . . . Drug-

related crime blights our communities. It destroys families and young lives and

fuels a wide range of criminal activity, including burglary and robbery. . . We

won’t tolerate the menace of drugs in our communities–it cause’s misery and

costs lives. . . This new money will enable agencies to step up their fight against

drugs and the crime it breeds. It will get drug dealers off our kids’ backs and into

prison and help safeguard our communities. (HM Treasury 2001)

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There is extensive work to be done regarding public opinion which needs to start

at the highest level. Although the current labour government have promoted their

social inclusion policy some aspects of that have been conflicting such as their

war on drugs rhetoric and preventing press releases as the one above. Until they

are prepared to promote a wider debate on the problems of combating drug

misuse and openly stand by programmes such as the 2nd chance programme

there will be a constant public scepticism and synergism towards such initiatives.

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Chapter 7

Conclusion

Does it work?

After investigating and examining the arguements both for and against the use of

sport as an effective intervention in combatting drugs and crime, the study will

now construct a conclusion to its findings.

Using sport is only a catalyst, sport is important to encourage project

participation. It is through the trust and mutual respect built up between

participants and project staff that alternative lifestyles can be introduced.

Robbins (1990), Nichols (1997)

The philosophy that engaging drug users and offenders in sports and outdoor

activities has a morally redemptive quality was very popular with Victorian social

reformers and similar claims are sometimes made today. But how effective are

sports and outdoor activities in combating drug use and crime?

Robins et al (1996)

Some exponents have argued that the basic value of sport is that it has a wide

appeal, both because it has many different forms and because opportunities to

participate are widely available. Therefore, it is relatively easy to continue

participating in sport, after an initial introduction. However, sport has also been

criticised because those playing and leading it may not necessarily promote pro-

social values (Critcher, 2000) and ‘not all sports are characterised by a sense of

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fair play and absence of criminal associations’ (Utting, 1996: 55). Therefore the

evidence of the effectiveness of such programmes in drug and crime reduction is

far from clear (Utting, 1996; Jupp and Barron, 1999).

Nichols (2004:193) highlights that an implication of not having a focused aim or

objective to programmes of this nature and the less a programme is directed

solely on drug or crime reduction, the harder it will be for evaluation to identify

and measure a causal relationship between the programme and reduction in

drug use and offending. Therefore, the harder it will be to produce the evidence

which sceptics regard as ‘robust intermediate or final outcome data’ (Coalter, et

al. 2000: 47). This is a limitation of the ability to achieve evidence based policy in

this area of work.

Although a various studies have suggested that sports intervention programmes

have been associated with reduced rates of drug use and offending the data on

which such conclusions are based is often not sufficient to allow firm conclusions

to be drawn. For example, the numbers involved may be too small to be

statistically significant or the follow up period may be too short. For future studies

in regard to rates of drug use or re-offending, this study would recommend a

much larger data set and a more longitudinal study. For example, a minimum

follow-up period of two years.

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Even where there is a claimed link between sports schemes and drug and crime

reduction, those monitoring and evaluating these programmes have been very

cautious about claiming a direct relationship. Where a direct causal relationship

is suggested, it is unclear what specific dimension or dimensions of the

intervention schemes are primarily responsible for the claimed success.

If it is accepted that drug use and crime may be reduced by sports-focussed

programmes, the evidence does not extend to demonstrating that the value of

the drug or crime reduction is greater than either the costs of providing the

programmes or the costs of dealing with crime after it has taken place and more

work is needed on these cost-benefit questions. Relatively few programmes have

built in techniques for monitoring the outcomes of the intervention strategies.

Where monitoring and evaluation processes are built in to ‘sport in the

community schemes’, they tend to be applied rather inconsistently and the

emphasis is often placed upon demonstrating the ‘benefits’ afforded individual

participants on the programme (see e.g. Crabbe, 2000; Long et al., 2002;

Nichols, 2004; Ramella, 2004; Robins, 1990; Sport England, 2002).

On this basis, Gratton and Taylor (2000:111) have recently concluded that ‘In the

meantime, government subsidies for sports programmes with drug and crime

reduction or prevention as a major objective are in a fragile position, because the

necessary evidence of effectiveness or efficiency is so hard to assemble’.

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If we leave aside this question of the impact upon drug related behaviour, it was

evident that projects might be more or less effective in their pursuit of related

goals such as the transmission of new skills, improving self confidence,

developing good relationships with adults, and gaining an increased

understanding of the potentially harmful consequences of drug abuse. Some

projects appear to us to be powerful interventions if measured in these terms;

others were less impressive.

Smith & Waddington (2004; 10; 279) concluded that perhaps all that can be said

is that it is at least plausible to suppose that some projects may have had an

impact on the drug taking behaviour of some of their clients; and that in respect

of some other projects it would have been implausible to suppose that they had

any such impact. Powerful sustained interventions may influence behaviour;

marginal, ephemeral interventions will not.

One major issue is that relatively few ‘sport in the community schemes’ have built

in techniques for monitoring their impact on levels of crime or drug use; as a

result, it is difficult to be sure about what impact, if any, they have on rates of

crime or drug use. Furthermore, the absence of any clearly articulated theoretical

rationale for these schemes means that, even where success is claimed, it is

unclear what specific aspects of the schemes account for that claimed success.

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David Blunkett, declared, ‘Social science should be at the heart of policymaking.

We need a revolution in relations between government and the social research

community – we need social scientists to help determine what works and why,

and what types of policy initiatives are likely to be most effective’

(Blunkett, 2000:33-34).

Gratton and Taylor (2000:111) have noted in relation to crime reduction schemes

– though the point would apply equally well to anti-drugs schemes – even if it is

accepted that crime may be reduced by sports-based schemes, the evidence

does not extend to proving that the value of the crime reduction is greater than

either the costs of providing the programmes or the costs of dealing with crime

after it has taken place, and more work is needed on these cost-benefit

questions.

However, after reflecting on both sides of the argument this study acknowledges

the substantial amount of empirical evidence and personal perception indicating

that sport does have an effective role to play in the treatment of drug users and in

combating the acquisitive with which it is linked. One can not just dismiss the

comments made by both the professionals and clients interviewed or of those

from previous studies and schemes. There is a widespread belief that sport,

particularly football, can be used to promote social inclusion (Department for

Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), (2001); Collins et al (1999); Football Task

Force, (1999)

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Most drug-abuse experts and historians agree that we are in the declining phase

of a drug epidemic that began about 30 years ago. Still, drug abuse remains one

of the nation's most critical of domestic problems. It is strongly linked to crime,

family breakdown, homelessness, desease and high health care and criminal

justice cost. Until we are able to combat the current level of drug use, addiction

and crime then individual tragedies and profound social problems will continue to

undermine the quality of our lives. Surely more effort and resources should be

allocated to re-directing or deflecting individuals away from drug use and crime

and not towards the already over-crowded and ineffective prison system.

Therefore, this dissertation concludes that further research be carried out to

establish some hard evidence regarding the uses for sport in combatting drug

use and crime.

After reviewing the arguments this study supports the argument that sports

activity programmes can provide an important vehicle through which personal

and social development may occur and positively impact behaviour. The

evidence suggests, however, that these programs alone will not impact directly

on reducing an individuals drug use or crime, but rather they should be a

component of a broader strategy for reducing and/or preventing drug use. They

are good tools for engaging and retaining clients into a more extensive treatment

package, which in turn will reap the benefits of reduced drug use and an impact

on acquisitive crime. This study will also argue that however well planned and

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organised a project, its ultimate success depends greatly on the personalities

and characters that actually run it.

This study suggests that more thought should be taken by policy makers and

researchers towards the views of Tacon (2007) and others, such as, Pedersen

and Rieper (2008), when they suggests that to address this lack of evidence one

must advocate the use of realist evaluation as a methodology for evaluating

football-based social inclusion projects. Unlike traditional methods of evaluation,

realist evaluation seeks to understand the complex processes involved in such

projects by identifying the contexts, mechanisms and outcomes through which

they function. It provides a framework within which evaluation can contribute to

both theory development and the betterment of social programmes. This

feedback loop relies on the aggregation of individual evaluations, which is

particularly appropriate given the diverse, localised nature of most sports-based

programmes. See also Campbell et al (1999), Connell et al (1995), Pawson &

Tilley (1997), and Popper (1945)

The potential benefits of realist evaluation are wide-ranging. Practitioners will be

able to use evaluation results to design and deliver more effective projects.

Participants, in turn, will benefit from these improvements, since future projects

will be designed to meet their specific needs. The evaluation process will also

offer valuable guidance for policy-makers concerned with sport and social

inclusion. In addition, it will provide a way for sports programmes to formally

evaluate the contribution they make to community development.

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If these goals are to be achieved, it is necessary to develop a workable

methodology based on realist evaluation that can be incorporated widely into the

delivery of football- based social inclusion projects.

This study demonstrates the importance of rigorous evaluation for all those

involved in sport and social inclusion. It also identified some of the issues

currently affecting evaluation and explained the positive contribution that realist

evaluation could make. However, a more detailed exploration of this concept lies

beyond the scope of this study.

The main objective of this study was to establish whether sport can be used as

an effective tool in reducing drug use and acquisitive crime. It has sought to

highlight the arguments in favour of these types of initiatives as well as highlight

the more critical comments on policy issues and evaluation issues arising from

using sporting programmes as vehicles of social policy in which the intention is to

reduce levels of crime and drug misuse. In doing so, we have shown that there is

little ‘concrete’ or ‘hard’ evidence of the effectiveness of such schemes in

reducing crime or drug use (Long and Sanderson, 2001). However, there is an

over whelming philosophy (unproven belief) that some how it has a major role to

play.

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The argument around the cost effectiveness of such programmes has been

difficult to gauge from this study. There are two valid and justified arguments,

however, cost effectiveness can only be measured when there is a clear rational

around what the proposed initiative is to achieve.

As for public attitudes and social perception of these sorts of initiatives, there

seems to be an abundance of evidence supporting the argument that social

attitude towards this client group is rather negative, if not at times hostile. It has

also been suggested that these attitudes and opinions are not just constricted to

the general public but may also be felt amongst some health care professionals

as well as other statutory agencies, such as, the police, prison service and

probation service.

This study acknowledges the strong argument in favour of the concept that sport

is or can be used as an effective tool to combat drug use and crime. However,

there are indications sport in itself, is not the answer, but merely the vehicle and

that its main objective is not directly targeting drug users or criminals but the

issues that for many may lead to these activities being pursued. It seems that by

combating boredom, giving individuals purpose and direction, the ability to

engage more on their terms and at their pace, also by being non judgemental

and supportive attracts individuals and motivates them to look towards change.

Sport seems to have the ability to achieve this due to its popularity especially

amongst young people but surely other activities have the potential to achieve

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the same. This study recommends further and more in depth research studies in

to these arguments with a more defined rational, larger scale studies and more

longitudinal approach.

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Chapter 8

Appendix A

NAME & ADDRESS TEL NO:

DATE

Letter of Invitation

Dear –name-,
I am currently writing my dissertation which aims to focus on the effectiveness
sports activities as a tool to reduce problematic drug use and subsequent crime
related offending. I would like to ask if you would be interested in participating in this
piece of research which I am undergoing for the final part of my MSc Contemporary
Issues in Drug Use at Teesside University.

The research will be about the views of people, both clients and professionals, who
have been actively involved in the 2nd Chance programme.
I would like to hear your views on the programme from your personal and
professional perspective and how you think it has, or has not benefited your working
practice.

Your participation is entirely voluntary. If you decide to take part, I would like to
contact you to arrange a convenient time and venue for the interview. The interview
should not take longer than 30 minutes.
Please be prepared that I will record the interview. However, you can cancel your
participation at any time. Furthermore please ask your managers permission, and
confirm that participating in this interview is not conflicting with your company policy.

I assure you that anything you divulge will be treated in the strictest confidence, and
both you and your service will be totally anonymised. None of the information you
provide will be passed on to a third person.
The information provided will be kept in a secure place until it is destroyed at the
completion of the research. If you are in any doubt, or have further questions
regarding my research, please do not hesitate to contact me at the number provided
at the top of the letter.

Yours sincerely,

Mark Williams

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Consent form

I, _____________________ (name) agree / disagree (delete as

appropriate) to participate in the research.

Please contact me on ______________________ (date) under the

following phone number _______________________ to arrange a

meeting.

The best time to contact me is am / pm (delete as appropriate).

Could you please fill out the slip and sent it back to me in the self addressed

envelope provided. Thank you very much for you time!

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Appendix B

ADDRESS OF AGENCY TEL NO OF AGENCY

DATE

Letter of Invitation

Dear –name-,
I am conducting a piece of research on the 2nd chance sports programme. I would
like to ask if you would be interested in taking part in research study I am doing as part of my
MSc Contemporary Issues of Drug Use at Teesside University.

The research is about the views of the people who have taken part in the programme and
will ask your opinion on, the benefits of the programme and how you would improve it.

The interview is very informal and will be in a place of your choice. Your participation is
entirely voluntary. If you decide to take part, I will contact you to arrange a convenient time
to meet up.
During the interview I would like to hear about your opinions and feels around the
programme and how you think it could be made better.
The interview will be tape recorded; however, I will terminate the interview at any time if it
makes you feel uncomfortable. The chat should not take longer than an hour.

Anything you tell me will be treated in the strictest confidence, and you will be made
anonymous. That means that your name or any other form of identification will not be
passed on to a third person, and your participation will have no impact on the services or
treatment you are receiving.
However, I need to advise you that I might have to breach this confidentiality as soon as you
tell me anything that indicates that you are at risk of harming yourself or others.

The information you give me will be kept in a secure place and will be destroyed as soon as
the research is completed.

If you are in any doubt, or have further questions regarding my research, please do not
hesitate to contact me at the number provided at the top of the letter.

Yours sincerely,

Mark Williams

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Consent form

I, _____________________ (name) agree / disagree (delete as

appropriate) to participate in the research.

Please contact me on ______________________ (date) under the

following phone number _______________________ to arrange a

meeting.

The best time to contact me is am / pm (delete as appropriate).

Could you please fill out the slip and sent it back to me in the self addressed

envelope provided. Thank you very much for you time!

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Appendix C

What is it all about?


I want to find out about how the 2nd Chance programme and other sports
activities affect you.
I’d like you to talk about your experiences with the programme and it
doesn’t matter if they are positive or negative. I’m also interested in your
ideas on how you may want to change the way the programme is run
today, if you had the power.

Who is this person who interviews me?


Some of you will already know me or you’ve probably seen me running
around at the programme. My name is Mark Williams; I work for Addaction
and am part of the DIP team. I’m the one who will have a chat with you.

Why am I doing this interviewing?


Your view is important. It not only helps me with my dissertation, but the
information will be fed back to the staff. Of course I would not let them
know your name. But it gives them an opportunity to adapt and improve
the programme for the better.

How will the interview be conducted?


The chat will be in a place of your choice which could be the sports centre
or in the treatment centre. Before the interview starts I will ask you to sign
a consent form. I will also explain to you in detail what it is all about
confidentiality and anonymity. Please be prepared that I will record our
chat.

What if I feel uncomfortable?


Please do tell me at any point during the interview if you feel
uncomfortable. We will stop the interview instantly and if you wish I will
destroy all your data there and then.

What happens to all the stuff I fill out and the recorded
interview?
While I’m writing my study I will store everything in a secure place so
nobody can get hold of it. After I’m finished with the project I will destroy
all the material.

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Any more questions?


Please do not hesitate to ask me if you are not entirely sure about
anything. I will be available for a chat at the programme, so please feel
free to approach me and ask any questions. If not, just leave a message
with your key worker who will forward it to me or ring me directly on the
number given. If you ring or text, I will ring you back!

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Appendix D

CONSENT FORM
Project title:

Drugs, Crime & Sport:


Can sport be used as an effective tool for reducing problematic drug use and
offending behaviour?
An account of clients, sports staff and substance misuse professionals involved in
the 2nd chance sports programme and a review of previous research finding.

Material gathered during this research will be treated as confidential and securely
stored. Please answer each statement concerning the collection and use of the
research data.
I have read and understood the information sheet. Yes No

I have been given the opportunity to ask questions about Yes No


the study.
I have had my questions answered satisfactorily. Yes No

I understand that I can withdraw from the study at any time Yes No
without having to give an explanation.
I agree to the interview being audiotaped and to its contents Yes No
being used for research purposes.
I do not want to be identified in this interview and in any Yes No
subsequent publications or use. Where used my name
must be removed and my comments made unattributable.
I would like to see a copy of my transcript. Yes No

Name (printed) ______________________________________________

Signature _______________________________ Date_______________

Feel free to contact me if you have any further questions.

Mark Williams

Appendix E

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Interview Guide for Professional (fairly unstructured)

1. Introduction, explanation of research purpose and participants’ rights


(anonymity, consent, right to withdraw from interview at any time)

2. How have you become involved in the 2nd chance programme?

3. Have you ever been involved or heard of similar concepts and what were your
experiences of those?

4. In your view, how has it benefited your service and individual practice?

5. In your view how would you like to see the programme evolve and what, if
any, modifications or improvements would you make?

6. Are there any issues or barriers preventing this happening?

7. Briefly outline in your personal views on any positive aspects of the scheme.

8. Briefly outline in your personal views on any negative aspects of the scheme.

9. Generally, do you believe that sports activities can or should be used as an


effective tool for both the rehabilitating of drug users and offenders, including
your views on its cost effectiveness?

10. Any Questions and thank you!

Appendix F

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Interview Guide for Service User

1. Introduction, explanation of research purpose and participants’ rights


(anonymity, consent, right to withdraw from interview at any time)

2. How did you become involved in the 2nd Chance programme?

3. Have you ever been involved or heard of any other similar projects or
programmes and what do you think about them?

4. What has the 2nd chance programme done for you?

5. What would you like to see happen with the programme if you had the
chance, what would you change, improve, or develop?

6. What do you think is stopping this development from happening?

7. Have you got any negative issues with the programme?

8. What are for you the most positive things about the programme?

9. Do you think that programmes like this that use sports activities are any good
for helping people get away from drug use and crime?

10. What other activities or programmes do you think you and your mates would
be interested in?

Questions 2, 3 and 4 also have the purpose of getting to know the participants
history with the programme and to put them at ease. Through the questions I also
hope to reveal issues with them I have not mentioned in this interview guide, but
which might be relevant to the study.

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Appendix G

Some general facts


Age:

Area:

Main substance:

Multiple substance use:

Onset of substance use:

Route of use:

Current status of use:

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Appendix H

Service User Interview (MSU - 1)

1. How did you become involved in the 2nd Chance programme?

‘My key worker told me about it and she picked me up and took me to the bus the
first time I went’

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of any other similar projects or
programmes and what do you think about them?

No, I’ve never been involved in anything like this, no since school when we did
different stuff. I think it’s a really good thing coz there’s nothing round here to do
especially if you’re on drugs. They should do it more like every day not just once a
week’.

3. What has the 2nd chance programme done for you?

Dunno really, I suppose it gives me summit to do which stops me thinking about


drugs. I’ve met lots of people too and it’s keepin’ me fitter. I just like doin’ it, that’s all.

4. What would you like to see happen with the programme if you had the
chance, what would you change, improve, or develop?

‘I’d make it every day me, and I’d do it in Peterlee coz that would make it easier and
save money for the bus which we could use on other stuff. I’d like to do more
tournaments other places so we meet other people and see other places. I’d also get
more choices for stuff to do’.

5. What do you think is stopping this development from happening?

Don’t know, money maybe, don’t know if they know what I think. Maybe they haven’t
got the time and the students need time to do their stuff.

6. Have you got any negative issues with the programme?

‘Don’t like the way there getting less people coming coz they might stop it if there
aint enough people coming. Another thing is I’d like to do some different stuff and
like I said before I’d like to have every day’.

7. What are the most positive things about the programme?

‘Keeps me out of bovver dunnit (laugh) no, seriously its good coz it gives ya summit
to do and stuff you like so that keeps your mind off all the other stuff going on. I’ve
met some mates and got a bit fitter which has also been a good thing. I get come out
and come to Durham, it’s really nice here and the people are nice too.

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8. Do you think that programmes like this that use sports activities are any
good for helping people get away from drug use and crime?

Yeah deffo, it’ like when your in jail and you go to the gym all the time which makes
you feel good and takes your mind off all the crap that’s going on. If I wasn’t here I’d
be at home bored, probably think about drugs or go out with me mates and get up to
all sorts of stuff. This gives us summit else to do that’s why I want it every day then
I’d stop getting into bovver and help with using the drugs’.

9. What other activities or programmes do you think you and your mates
would be interested in?

I’m nuts me, i’d like to go rock climbing on real mountains not just indoors although
that was ok. I’d like to do go-karting, is that a sport? Well i’d like to do that and
sailing or rowing. We talked about just doing snooker or pool, some of the lads used
to go but its nt on any more. Maybe they can do more indoor sports like that as well.
Any thing really, its worth trying them if you haven’t tried them before and then you
can choose afterwards, cant ya?

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Service User Interview (MSU – 2)

1. How did you become involved in the 2nd Chance programme?

‘Me mate said about it first like, then I met the workers on the bus and then I started
too got to the treatment centre more regular’.

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of any other similar projects or
programmes and what do you think about them?

‘No, nowt like this, I wish there was more like this. I could do with cumin’ here every
day like’.

3. What has the 2nd chance programme done for you?

‘It gives us summit to look forward to and gets us out of the house, like I said I wish
there was more like this around our way for everybody to use, especially me and me
mates’.

4. What would you like to see happen with the programme if you had the
chance, what would you change, improve, or develop?

‘I’d like it to be every day and near me house, so I didn’t have to travel so far. I’d like
to go on more days out like the climbing and the rafting we’ve been on and I’d like to
do some go-carting and paint-balling stuff, that’s what’.

5. What do you think is stopping this development from happening?

‘Dunno money and people to run it I suppose. The Uni’s busy with students and I
dunno if we can go anywhere else. People don’t like us going to the leisure centre
coz they don’t like mixing with us druggies do they’?

6. Have you got any negative issues with the programme?

‘Not really, only that it’s not on enough and that it’s a bit far away from my house.
Maybe that more people should be coming, coz there used to be loads more every
week but they’ve stopped coming’.

7. What are the most positive things about the programme?

‘Gives us summit to do. Gives us summit to look forward too every week. Keeps us
a bit fitter and keeps me out of trouble, dunnit’?

8. Do you think that programmes like this that use sports activities are any
good for helping people get away from drug use and crime?

‘Course they do, that’s what they are here for innit? It keeps you out of grafting coz
that’s what you do when you’re bored and on the gear. Since I’ve been going to
ESMI I’ve been off the gear and stuff like this keeps us busy so I don’t go back on it’.

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9. What other activities or programmes do you think you and your mates
would be interested in?

‘More footie would be good and I like swimming too. Me and the lads here have
talked about going on a weekend camping trip or doing some outward bounds stuff. I
like fishing but I don’t know if they would wanna do that like.

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Service User Interview (MSU -3)

1. How did you become involved in the 2nd Chance programme?

‘ESMI and Lifeline,

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of any other similar projects or
programmes and what do you think about them?

‘I’ve been involved with this a couple of year but that’s all like.

3. What has the 2nd chance programme done for you?

‘It’s helped us socialise more and get us out the house, its given us a goal about
what I want to do with me self and everything, coz I wanna do the football coaching
course, refereeing course and look for like jobs and that. The coaching courses are
summit I deffo wanna do coz I missed out last time on it’.

4. What would you like to see happen with the programme if you had the
chance, what would you change, improve, or develop?

‘I’d do a bit more outings, you know more outings, the lads wanna do some other
things an all which would be go but for me just a few more outings. I enjoy it the way
it is really, maybe twice a week or more’.

5. What do you think is stopping this development from happening?

‘Numbers have gone down and money, we’d need more money or funding, that’s the
main one’.

6. Have you got any negative issues with the programme?

‘No, its done great for me, nothing at all, the people are great and that’.

7. What are the most positive things about the programme?

‘Everyone gets along, it’s a good day or a couple of hours out, I really enjoy cumin’
and never miss it’.

8. Do you think that programmes like this that use sports activities are any
good for helping people get away from drug use and crime?

‘Definitely, definitely, like me self and the other lads have played football all our lives
and this is getting us back it to it so it is really good, definitely. Any thing beats going
to jail or getting it trouble so its good yeah!

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9. What other activities or programmes do you think you and your mates
would be interested in?

‘Dunno, go-carting, I really wanna do that like and that’s the only one I wanna do, I
think’.

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Service User Interview (FSU -1)

1. How did you become involved in the 2nd Chance programme?

‘Through the treatment centre and Lifeline and NECA’.

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of any other similar projects or
programmes and what do you think about them?

‘No, nowt like this, I’ve done sports at school and stuff but nowt like this’.

3. What has the 2nd chance programme done for you?

‘Gives us summit to do, like on a Thursday, know what I mean, coming through and
playing football or using the gym or sometimes trampolining and other stuff’.

4. What would you like to see happen with the programme if you had the
chance, what would you change, improve, or develop?

‘I’d do it so we could come every day and that there was more things going on like
more stuff for the girls coz not all the girls like footie, I do but some don’t and there
should be stuff for them. I’d also go on more trips coz they are mint, especially the
white water rafting, mint’.

5. What do you think is stopping this development from happening?

‘It’s got to be money and that the key workers can’t be doing this stuff every day.

6. Have you got any negative issues with the programme?

‘More stuff and more stuff for girls like they do in Sunderland, that scheme sounds
mint and we would love summit like that.

7. What are the most positive things about the programme?

‘Meeting people and getting out, doing stuff that’s good for you and stops you getting
bored. I’ve also done my level 1 coaching badge and I wouldn’t have done that if it
wasn’t for this programme.

8. Do you think that programmes like this that use sports activities are any
good for helping people get away from drug use and crime?

‘Yeah, I think so, coz it gives you something to look forward to and is always there
even when you are feeling bad. The people are nice and I think that if these things
where there every day I think it would help a lot of people’.

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9. What other activities or programmes do you think you and your mates
would be interested in?

‘More things for girls and more trips out, like to the white water rafting or rock
climbing. I’d like to learn to drive; do you think they will do that? No, more trips out,
maybe camping or visiting other programmes.

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Appendix I

Professional Interview DW1 (Drug Worker)

Introduction, explanation of research purpose and participants’ rights (anonymity,


consent, right to withdraw from interview at any time)

1. How have you become involved in the 2nd chance programme?

I became involved with the 2nd Chance programme as part of my involvement as an


employee of addaction, working at the Durham Drug Intervention Programme.

Durham DIP management and senior workers, particularly Mark Williams played a
significant role in promoting the scheme and making it viable.

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of similar concepts and what were
your experiences of those?

In a previous life I worked for the national probation service that ran a similar
scheme as part of semi structured activities on the old DTTO programme.
Sport as ever, particularly football, is very popular with our client group and seems to
work well in occupying their time in a constructive way.

3. In your view, how has it benefited your service and individual practice?

I firmly believe that all of the clients which I have nominated to the scheme over the
duration of the project have benefited from the scheme.
I think the most reoccurring positive feedback which I hear from my clients is that it
has given them something constructive to do and it has broken the monotony of
everyday .Clients also report improvements in self esteem and self reflection.
Clients have also noted the physical benefits of engaging in this service, which
seems to have spurred them onto, strive for further improvements.
One client in particular noted how much of a talent he seemed to have for kick
boxing and has since taken up the sport on a regular basis at a local club.

4. In your view how would you like to see the programme evolve and what, if
any, modifications or improvements would you make?

I think the process of recruiting and nominating clients needs to be improved and I
also believe the transportation of clients to the venue needs to be reviewed.
I also feel strongly that public perceptions of the programme needs to be improved,
how we achieve that I am not quite sure, but recent sensationalist and blatantly
biased media coverage of the programme (particularly the issues related to the
awarding of premier league football tickets for been successful on the programme)
needs to be addressed.

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5. Are there any issues or barriers preventing this happening?

Most definitely. I think as a sector we probably have a very long way to go before
public perceptions of schemes like this begins to change.
Our clients have been made out to be dirty rotten smack heads who have there
burglaries and muggings of old ladies rewarded with free premier league football
tickets!!!!

With regards the recruitment and nomination of clients, I feel that it is essential that
‘ALL’ agencies in Durham assist the DIP in promoting this activity and improve their
referral rate, as so many suitable clients are very clearly missing out.
The probation service is particularly bad at failing to promote this programme, but
perhaps that’s something for the powers that be to sort out.
With regards the improved transportation, I feel recent changes in the DIP’s lone
working policy have restricted all staff in their ability to escort clients in groups to and
from the venue.
Restrictions on funding have meant that no additional private buses could be hired to
fill this void. It seems a great shame that such a poorly thought out decision is
beginning to impact on the scheme in a bad way (in terms of retention figures).

6. Briefly outline in your personal views on any positive aspects of the


scheme.

The scheme clearly provides constructive activities for clients to engage in, which it
could be argued is keeping them out of crime, at least whilst they are at the
scheme!!
I feel the scheme has also given a lot of clients the opportunity to discover attributes
they probably thought they didn’t possess, both physical and emotional.
I feel the scheme has breathed confidence and improved self esteem into the clients
and has enabled them to review their own lives, and in some cases has triggered
thoughts and actions about real sustainable change.
I also feel that the extensive range of activities which is now available to our clients
is fantastic.

7. Briefly outline in your personal views on any negative aspects of the


scheme.

As I said earlier, I feel that other organisations within our field need to be playing a
more significant part. I sense that because it was the DIP who played such a crucial
role in setting up and implementing the scheme, it seems the perception that the DIP
is purely responsible for the scheme has stuck.
Probation, NECA, NHS Trust, DAAT and others all need to be adding their influence
and finance to the scheme.

8. Generally, do you believe that sports activities can or should be used as an


effective tool for both the rehabilitating of drug users and offenders, including
your views on its cost effectiveness?

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If we were to examine the scheme purely on it’s ability to contribute to the


rehabilitation process of drug using offenders, then I would argue that it has played
some part, how significant a part I don’t know.
I am aware that in a lot of cases the experiences clients have gained from their
involvement in this scheme have triggered thoughts of personal reflection and
change.
Confidence and self esteem, breads confidence and self esteem, so I think the
repeated involvement in constructive activities in a positive and controlled
environment can only be a good thing for our client group.
The project is one of a number of important wheels in the cog of self discovery and
recovery.
In terms of cost effectiveness it would depend on what the assessment criteria was.
If it were to be examined on the basis of reductions in the acquisitive crime levels of
each of the clients involved, then I would suggest that it would not warrant further
funding, but then realistically speaking, you could never expect the scheme to
achieve large reductions in the acquisitive crime levels in the first place.
In terms of proving a venue for our clients to take part in positive constructive
activities, where they can learn new skills, gain qualifications and improve their self
esteem, and of course do this all for free, then in that respect, I feel the scheme has
been tremendously successful and should certainly warrant further funding.

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Professional Interview DW2 (Drug Worker)

1. How have you become involved in the 2nd chance programme?

‘I got involved at the very start of the programme when the DIP were organising the
football programme and tournaments’

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of similar concepts and what were
your experiences of those?

‘I have been involved in football projects to engage with hard to reach groups
previously when working for the National Association for the Care and Rehabilitation
of Offenders (NACRO). Football was a popular method for engaging with disaffected
young males’.

3. In your view, how has it benefited your service and individual practice?

‘It has most definitely given me a well needed option for a structured activity and an
opportunity to engage with some of my clients in a different enviroment. As for the
service it has given all workers the same benefits of engaging with their clients and
has given the service a positive activity to promote itself’.

4. In your view how would you like to see the programme evolve and what,
if any, modifications or improvements would you make?

‘I would like to see the programme expand into a multi – sports, multi – activity
programme open to all service users, such as, alcohol and mental health clients as
well as carers. I would employ several individuals to coordinate and run the multi –
activity programme and invite more involvement from the universities and local
authorities. I would like to see the programme rolled out throughout the country with
the ability to visit and compete with other areas, maybe regional and national
tournaments’
For any future growth, long term substantial funding is needed as is a commitment
from all parties. I passionately believe that the programme should be directed and
lead by service users which will be integral to the programmes long term success’.

5. Are there any issues or barriers preventing this happening?

‘Funding, high level commitment and commitment from the front line staff to continue
with the work already implemented. It is imperative that the belief, motivation and
commitment continues from front line staff as without this the whole pack of cards
falls down. If the programme continues not to involve service user involvement and
take inspiration and guidance from this source the concept risks petering out and
losing interest by service users’.

6. Briefly outline in your personal views on any positive aspects of the


scheme.

‘The positives of sports initiatives have been well documented. The concept can be
linked to motivating individuals towards change, lift their self respect and esteem.
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Improve both mental and physical health and relieve boredom which is commonly
linked to drug use and criminal activity’. These sorts of programmes are good for
engaging hard to reach groups and give the worker an opportunity to establish a
stronger relationship due to sharing interests and experiences. I feel workers should,
if wanted, participate and share the experience with their clients’.

7. Briefly outline in your personal views on any negative aspects of the


scheme.

‘If it does not develop there is a risk that it will just fizzle out which will be very
deflating and demoralising for those who have been regular core participants. The
concept, although fantastic for those who enjoy it only targets and benefits those
who enjoy sport. What is there for those who don’t? The programme is currently
dependent on a few passionate people who believe in it and with out their
enthusiasm may again just fizzle out.

8. Generally, do you believe that sports activities can or should be used as


an effective tool for both the rehabilitating of drug users and offenders,
including your views on its cost effectiveness?

‘Yes, most definitely! This is a great intervention and one which needs to be
developed, expanded and improved to accommodate a greater number of service
users. It should be open to all service users offering a wide range of activities. As for
cost effectiveness, I think that by engaging with these individuals and by supporting
them there is a far greater chance that they will address their drug using and
offending behaviour than by incarcerating them and excluding them from society.
You have to look at the human cost and not just at the monetary costs although I do
believe that the cost of such schemes will out way the cost on both the criminal
justice sysem and the national health service for which this group are currently a
massive burden’.

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Professional interview PSC 3 (sports coach)

1. How have you become involved in the 2nd chance programme?

Through being approached by Tony W and GONE

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of similar concepts and what were
your experiences of those?

2nd Chance was the first project of this type that I have been involved in, although it
has acted as a catalyst to get involved with similar projects

3. In your view, how has it benefited your service and individual practice?

Benefit is to the students as it gives them an opportunity to work with groups that
they would not normally work with and wider their social awareness. Good for the
university around a PR point of view and also to attract funding.

4. In your view how would you like to see the programme evolve and what,
if any, modifications or improvements would you make?

‘Piloting a mentoring and work experience scheme. I think the programme evolves
itself over time and from this you find out what changes are required’.

5. Are there any issues or barriers preventing this happening?

‘Time constraints on the staff currently working on the programme as one to one
support is important and money is always an issue’

6. Briefly outline in your personal views on any positive aspects of the


scheme.

'Positive for students as they get good life skills and experience, open their eyes to
the world a bit. Positive for clients as we can see marked improvement of their life
skills in a majority of the cases, good feed back from majority of clients, gives them
something to do and keeps them busy and focused. Breaks down barriers and
preconceptions

7. Briefly outline in your personal views on any negative aspects of the


scheme.

Have had minor trouble with theft but don’t feel this is an issue.

8. Generally, do you believe that sports activities can or should be used as


an effective tool for both the rehabilitating of drug users and offenders,
including your views on its cost effectiveness?

Yes, sport is an important tool that can help to improve people lives by improving
their wellbeing mentally and physically. It can build confidence, self worth and self

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esteem leading to better social interaction and better job opportunities. The obvious
benefits of fitness from the programme are important for a group of people who may
have had ill health for an extended period of time and need this sort of support the
get themselves back in to a healthy lifestyle. It is not a cure in itself but used
alongside a structured programme of care I believe it can help improve the drop out
rate and add value to these other services.
Weighed up with the cost of keeping a prisoner in jail for a year or the high cost of
extended treatment the 2nd chance programme is value for money.

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Professional interview PSC4 (Sports Coach)

1. How have you become involved in the 2nd chance programme?

After an initial talk from Tony Wright (Government Office North East), it was decided
to run a pilot project at Durham University. The project initially focused on football
and recruited clients from Durham, Bishop, Peterlee and Darlington. The Team
Durham Community staff recruited student volunteers to deliver the football
coaching, this was led by a level 2 qualified coach.

2. Have you ever been involved or heard of similar concepts and what were
your experiences of those?

When we started the project we hadn’t heard of any other schemes, however now
we are involved in the scheme other projects have come to light.

3. In your view, how has it benefited your service and individual practice?

‘It has made me personally more aware of what goes on outside of my circle of
friends. It has challenged many views that I held about drug use and how recovering
drug users can be reintegrated into society and the support that they can access
along the way’. (PSC 2)

The benefits to the Team Durham Community Programme include more


opportunities for student volunteers to get involved in coaching and mentoring roles
that prior to now they wouldn’t have experienced. ‘Mixing with a client group that
many of them would never have had the opportunity to do in any other setting, this
has led them to question and understand some social issues that arise in
communities’. (PSC 2)

‘I would hope that the scheme has broken down a number of barriers and
stereotypes, clients now see Durham University as a place where there are people
who are interested in them and do want to help them improve and step on. Students
and staff see that helping clients making that step on in life is of benefit’. (PSC 2)

4. In your view how would you like to see the programme evolve and what,
if any, modifications or improvements would you make?

I would like to see greater involvement from the University as a whole, we are
hoping to get this working by offering clients from the scheme volunteer work
placements in departments within the University from estates and buildings,
catering, library services etc. This is still someway of implementation, but a whole
University approach would undoubtedly make the project stronger and give us more
opportunities to apply for more funding.

Short of building new facilities at Durham University I don’t think I would change
much else!

5. Are there any issues or barriers preventing this happening?

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We are still in the stages of talking to all the departments to arrange volunteer work
placements, I think it is very important that we get all the necessary paperwork
completed and make sure all the If’s are dotted and the tm’s are crossed to make
sure the placements are worthwhile and could lead onto permanent work.

6. Briefly outline in your personal views on any positive aspects of the


scheme.

Seeing someone develop throughout the 3 years we have had the scheme at
Durham has been rewarding, from arriving in a poor state of health with little self
confidence to leading some aspects of the sessions and taking responsibilities for
other users is great to see.

It has also been good to see how the scheme has developed across all 5
Universities, the regional tournaments have been a great success and have grown
beyond what we thought was possible at the start of the scheme.

Seeing students and clients mixing is also a bonus of this scheme and many of the
students have stories of clients they have seen while on a night out and have had a
chat and a catch up.

7. Briefly outline in your personal views on any negative aspects of the


scheme.

We have had issues with a few clients who may or may not have been dealing with
other clients while at the University. This made some members of University staff
question why we were supporting the scheme. On the plus side a number of other
clients who were here on that day were embarrassed and apologised for the
behaviour of the other clients

Thefts occurring while the Second Chance clients are on site, the culprit was found
and not allowed to return to the scheme, again the other clients apologised for the
behaviour of this one guy. As a reaction to this theft, security was tightened up and
since then there have been no other incidence.

8. Generally, do you believe that sports activities can or should be used as


an effective tool for both the rehabilitating of drug users and offenders,
including your views on its cost effectiveness?

Sport is a normal activity and therefore can go along way to proving to family of
recovering drug users that they are doing something normal with their lives.

‘As a competitive sports person myself I get a buzz from taking part in physical
activity, I wonder if that buzz/kick can go someway to replacing the same feeling
drug users get when taking drugs. It also focuses the mind on achieving a goal,
through team work and individual discipline – it also makes you tired and helps you
sleep better and a number of the clients have said that sport helps them to do that’.

‘The cost effective side of the question I am not so sure about as I don’t know all the
figures, though I do feel that sometimes our programme isn’t cost effective when we
hire buses and 2 people are on them and then we hire coaches to deliver sessions
and only 3 people turn up to those sessions. But on the other hand if those 3 people

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are getting their lives back on track and are not taking up time through use of
emergency services, prison and probation services and eventually they get back into
work and start paying taxes then that can only be a good thing’. (PSC 4)

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Appendix J

Please return form with


Section A completed to:
The Secretary, Research
CONFIDENTIAL Ethics Committee
REQUEST FOR ETHICAL School of ……………….
APPROVAL
Section A: To be completed by the appropriate Project Supervisor or Director of Studies.
Please read Section 4 of the University’s “Policy, Procedures and Guidance Notes for
Research Ethics”.
1. School: Social Science & Law

2. Project Title: Sport, Drugs & Crime.

3a): Name, position and address of Project Supervisor/Director of Studies:


Dr Mark Simpson

3b): Name(s) and position of other Supervisor(s):


None

3c): Names of other collaborators on project:

None

4. Name(s) of Researcher(s)/Students working on this project:


Mark Williams

Please tick type of


Researcher:
Taught X PG Staff - Staff - FinalYearUnder-
Postgraduate Research higher other grad. Student
Student degree research
5. Expected duration of project from: 01/07/08 to:01/08/08

6. Aim(s) of Project:
Examine the influence of sports-based activities and interventions in reducing drug using and
offending behaviour amongst service users accessing the 2nd Chance sports programme and a
critical review of previous schemes using similar concepts.
7. Briefly describe the design of the project:
Fully transcribed semi structured interviews of four service users and four professionals participating
in the 2nd chance programme. Plus a critical review of existing research material from similar
schemes and concepts.

I will use a phenomenological approach whilst preparing and conducting the interviews.
Phenomenology is defined as a ‘philosophy that is concerned with the question of how individuals
make sense of the world around them and how in particular the philosopher should bracket out
preconceptions in his or her grasp of that world’ (Bryman, 2004, p13). Also, this philosophy, as
Interpretivism, recognises the ‘fundamental difference between the subject matter of the natural
sciences and the social sciences’ (Bryman, 2004. p14). It appreciates that ‘social reality has a
meaning for human beings and therefore human action is meaningful – that is, it has a meaning for
them and they act on the basis of the meanings that they attribute to their acts and to the acts of
others’ (Bryman, 2004, p14). This philosophy is a useful tool to understand and interpret my
interviewees’ actions from their point, regardless if they are clients or professionals.

I have designed two slightly different interview guides, one designed to focus on the clients
perspective and opinions, and the other designed to focus on the professional’s points of view and

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attitudes directed specifically towards the 2nd Chance Programme and the concept of sport as a tool
in both drug treatment and reducing crime. Both interview guides will be of a semi-structured nature;
however, the professionals will be given more scope and therefore the interviews will be of a slightly
more unstructured nature.
In a semi-structured interview the ‘researcher has a list of questions or fairly specific topics to be
covered, but the interviewee has a great deal of leeway in how to reply’ (Bryman. 2004, p321).
Considering the circumstances of the clients I intended to interview, I felt that a stricter semi-
structured guide would give them more confidence in talking about their experiences, since they felt
more comfortable when confronted with stricter guidelines and given less leeway.
The professional interview guide was slightly more unstructured to give the professionals the
opportunity to dwell or even expand on topics they might deemed as important or relevant (Bryman,
2004, p321).

Though the interview guides differed slightly, it will still gave the interviewees the power to decide to
talk about issues they consider as important or relevant, and the entire interview will become more
of a conversation (Bryman, 2004, p321).

This qualitative approach can be a very appealing research strategy, ‘because of their human
character’ (Gillham, 2005, p8). It furthermore is easier to probe and clarify. Additionally, it gives me,
the researcher the opportunity to show appreciation and understanding, which was particularly
important for my clients, as it encouraged them to talk more openly about their circumstances. This,
furthermore feministic approach, is entirely different from the traditionally male structured
interviewing culture. It allows me to approach participants with a certain ‘openness’, demonstrate
‘emotional engagement, and the development of trust’ (Punch, 2006, p173).

Whilst constructing both guides, I will make sure that questions are open and ordered, and that one
question flows reasonably into the other, but yet stayed flexible enough to alteration. I will also
consider language issues, and how I could adopt a language that would be easily understood,
especially by clients.

In general, interviews will not take longer than 30 minutes and usually take place in venues that are
familiar to the participants, such as, the sports facilities they attended or at their local treatment
centre. All interviews will be audio-recorded after interviewees have given their consent. The
participants have the right of receiving a transcribed version of their interview, which they indicate
on the consent form (Gillham, 2005, p14). Prior to interviewing the participants will be informed of
their rights and confidentiality issues.

8. Will the participants University of Teesside No University of Teesside No


be: (please tick as Students? Staff?
appropriate)
Other: 4 service users and participants on the 2nd chance sports project and 4 professionals from
County Durham Drug Services:

9. How many participants will be involved? 4 Clients and 4 professionals

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10. State how participants will be selected:

All 8 participants will be individuals associated with the scheme. There will be 4 clients and 4
professionals. The professionals will represent both the substance misuse workers and the sports
coaching staff. As for the clients it will be the first 4 clients who complete the invitation forms and
return them to me; however I am hoping that one of the clients will be a female and may make
amendments in the selection to accommodate for this.

11. Has statistical/methodological advice been sought on the size and design of the
Project? YES / NO

Yes, Dr Mark Simpson

12. What procedure(s) will be carried out on the participants? (Explain in terms
appropriate to a layperson)
Semi structured interviews, audio recorded and fully transcribed

13a): What potential risks to the interests of participants do you foresee?

Throughout the process I need to be aware of the likelihood of risks, and who might be at risk.
Furthermore, I might come across issues of honesty, trust, privacy and confidentiality, especially
since I have spent time with the clients before the interview and would most likely spend time with
them after it.

I also needed to think about issues of anonymity, and how I could provide it, as well as, the integrity
and quality of the research.

I also need to be aware of the possibility of the data collected, regardless if it would be chosen to be
published, would cause harm to that participant or organisation in the future.

13b); What potential risks to the Researchers do you foresee?

I see no risks to the researcher. All interviews will take place in a safe environment and all clients
have already been fully risk assessed before acceptance on to the programme.

The research has been agreed with both my employer and all of the participating agencies and
services. Also the relevant consent forms will be collected from the clients before commencement.

14 a): Will informed consent be obtained from all participants? YES / NO


(If written, attach a copy of the consent form and information sheet)
Yes

14b): If NO, why not? (Provide rationale.)

N/A

15: If there is doubt as to a subject’s ability to give consent, what steps will be taken
to ensure that the subject is willing to participate (e.g. assistance of independent colleague/
Next of kin or other means.)

Whilst preparing, carrying out and evaluating the interviews, I will adhere to the 4 main areas of
ethical principles, suggested by Diener and Crandall (in Bryman, 2004, p509), which are ‘Harm to
participants’, ‘Lack of informed consent’, ‘Invasion of privacy’, and ‘Deception’. Furthermore, I was
aware of the ethical issues I could encounter from the beginning of my research until after the project,
proposed by Miles and Huberman (in Punch, 2006, pp277-278). The ethical principles suggested by
Diener and Crandall merge into the issues mentioned by Miles and Huberman, and made me think

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more thoroughly about my research and its ethical impacts, on both clients and professionals .
Consent forms will be completed prior to the interview as well as the interviewees being given
information sets in advance of the interview date and time. The interviewees may also have a
nominated person present if they so wish. They will also be made aware that they may pull out or
stop the interview at any time and the material already recorded will be destroyed instantly.

The participants have the right to receive a transcribed version of their interview, which they indicated
on the consent form (Gillham, 2005, p14). Prior to interviewing the participants were informed of their
rights and confidentiality issues.

16: What information will be given to subject(s)?: (Attach copies of letters or information
Sheets to be given to participants.)

See attached.

17: Where will consent be recorded?

All relevant documentation including consent forms and audio tapes will be kept in a secure filing
cabinet until deemed not to be needed. I will destroy all audio tapes directly after transcription,
however, for the destruction of the written transcripts and the consent forms I will take guidance from
my course leader (Dr Mark Simpson) as to the soonest possible date for there destruction. This
maybe on completion and acceptance of my dissertation.

18a): Will participants be informed of their right to withdraw? YES / NO


Yes

18b): If not, why not? (provide rationale)

N/A

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19: Does the project involve any other disciplines and/or Ethics Committees?
YES / NO
(If YES, please state which and what approval has already been obtained - attach
Documentation.)
No

20: Will payments to participants be made? YES / NO


(If YES, state amount and whether payment is for out-of-pocket expenses, or a fee.)

No

21a): Will the project receive financial support from outside the University Teesside?
YES / NO
No

21b): If YES, specify the nature and source of the support:

N/A

21c) If YES, have any restrictions been imposed upon the conduct of the research?
YES / NO (If YES, specify the nature of the restrictions)

N/A

22: Will any restrictions be placed on the publication of results? YES / NO


(If YES, please state the nature of the restrictions)

No

23: Are there any other points you wish to make in justification of the proposed study?

(See attached documentation)

24: I have read the University’s guidelines on ethics related to research, and to the best
of my knowledge and ability confirm that the ethical considerations overleaf have been
assessed. I am aware of and understand University procedures on Research Ethics and
Health & Safety. I understand that the ethical propriety of this project may be monitored
by the School’s Research Ethics Sub-Committee.
(Please complete the following as appropriate) Please Tick
 I have appropriate experience of the general research area.
 I confirm that I have Research Ethics Training required by my School.
 I confirm that as Supervisor that I will monitor progress of the project.
• I confirm that the project complies with the Code of Practice of the
following Professional Body:

25:
Signature of Staff Researcher: _______________________________ Date: _________

OR: Signature of

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G7086401 Drugs,Crime & Sport

Project Supervisor/Director of Studies _________________________ Date: _________

SECTIONS B/C: SCHOOL APPROVAL or REFERRAL and UNIVERSITY RESEARCH


ETHICS COMMITTEE APPROVAL/REJECTION

Ethical Consideration The following points have been assessed:


1. The merit and feasibility of the proposal
2. Possible discomfort, distress or inconvenience to participants and/or Researchers
3. Procedures for respecting confidentiality and operating with data protection legislation.
4. The implications of monetary or other inducements to University of Teesside, its staff, student or
researchers, to participants or anyone else involved.
5. Potential conflicts of interest arising between the researcher’s employment and the research
project or other collaborative research.
6. All safety risks have been assessed in accordance with the University’s Risk Assessment
Procedure and measures taken where appropriate to make them as low as reasonably
practicable.
7 If the research involves human subjects, the following points have also been assessed:
Procedures for:
• Providing explanation to participants including the preparation of an appropriate
information sheet.
• obtaining informed consent from participants or where necessary from their parents or
guardians, including the preparation of a written consent form.
8. If the work may involve participants from vulnerable groups, the nature of recruitment and
participation of these people.
SECTION B: SCHOOL APPROVAL or REFERRAL
To be completed by Chair of the School Research Ethics Committee
EITHER:
a) Following consideration by the School Research Ethics Committee, I now
Authorise the above project.

Signature of Chair of School Research Ethics Committee: _____________ Date: _________

OR:
b) The School Research Ethics Committee is unable to reach a conclusion, and the
Case is referred to the University Research Ethics Committee.

Signature of Chair of School Research Ethics Committee: _____________ Date: __________

The Chair of the School Research Ethics Committee must send a copy of an APPROVED Request
for Ethical Approval Form to: The Secretary, University Research Ethics Committee, Research &
Development Office, and University of Teesside. The original of the form should be kept in the
School. The ORIGINAL of a REFERRED Request must be sent to the above address for action
and the Director of the School notified.
SECTION C: APPROVAL / REJECTION by University Research Ethics
Committee
EITHER:
a) On behalf of the University Research Ethics Committee, I now authorise the above
project:

Signature of Chair of University Research Ethics Committee: ____________ Date: _________

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G7086401 Drugs,Crime & Sport

OR:
b) The University Research Ethics Committee is UNABLE TO APPROVE the project for
the following reasons:

Signature of Chair of University Research Ethics Committee: _____________ Date: ________

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Declaration of Independent Work:


This dissertation is a result of my own work. Material (including ideas) from
the work of others has been acknowledged and quotations and paraphrases
suitably indicated. All identifying material (names, locations, etc) have been
anonymised.

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