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The Ministry of Justice announces national rollout of sobriety tag programme

Media Type: Press Release

SCRAM Systems is proud to be assisting the Ministry of Justice in addressing alcohol-related crimes in England and Wales.

This week the Ministry of Justice in the United Kingdom announced new legislation beginning 19 May 2020 under which offenders who commit alcohol-fuelled crime now may be banned from drinking and made to wear ‘sobriety tags’:

Alcohol misuse can affect all regions of society and is found to be a contributing factor to various crimes including serious assaults, drink driving, and criminal damage. According to Public Health England, alcohol-related crime costs the UK economy more than £21.5bn a year and the Ministry of Justice have taken an innovative step to directly address the issue. The new requirement is called the Alcohol Abstinence Monitoring Requirement (AAMR) and can be imposed by courts in accordance with community-based orders.  

The AAMR is a period of mandated sobriety and may be imposed on individuals who commit alcohol-related crimes. The period of sobriety will be monitored by a SCRAM Continuous Alcohol Monitoring® (SCRAM CAM®) alcohol tag. Referred to as a “sobriety tag”, SCRAM CAM tags rely on transdermal (“through the skin”) science to test for the presence of alcohol found in perspiration after a drinking event. SCRAM Systems® are the creators of the technology, which allow subjects to be monitored for the consumption of alcohol around the clock.  

Mike Iiams, CEO of SCRAM Systems said, “We are thrilled to be a part of this exciting partnership with the Ministry of Justice. Knowing that our technology will now be used to help make a positive difference in England and Wales as well is very rewarding for us as a company.” 

SCRAM Systems has been assisting the police, probation services and prisons to implement alcohol monitoring programmes in various locations around the world since 2003. During that time, they have successfully monitored over 750,000 individuals, accounting for almost 79 million days of alcohol abstinence. This has a direct and significant impact on offences committed. 

The AAMR has already been delivered in conjunction with a CAM tag under two large UK Pilots. These saw more than 1,400 offenders made subject to the AAMR and produced compliance rates of 94%.  

“We are delighted that this effective and popular sentencing option will now be available to courts across England and Wales,” said Amit Sethi, Head of European Operations at SCRAM Systems. “We believe that it will have a positive impact on perpetrators of alcohol related crimes and prove extremely valuable to those conducting the challenging job of managing criminal caseloads.” 

Media Contact: 
Amit Sethi, Head of European Operations 
Tel:020 3059 7797  

Notes to editors

The Alcohol Abstinence Monitoring Requirement allows courts to impose a requirement that an offender abstain from alcohol for a fixed time period of up to 120 days and be regularly tested, via a transdermal alcohol monitoring device in the form of a ‘tag’ fitted around the ankle, as part of a Community or Suspended Sentence Order. The technology was piloted in London between 2014 and 2018. It was also made available in Humberside, Lincolnshire and North Yorkshire between 2017 and 2019. 

About SCRAM Systems 
SCRAM Systems is a leading provider of electronic monitoring and software solutions for the criminal justice industry. The company’s flagship Continuous Alcohol Monitoring (CAM) technology, launched in 2003 and revolutionized the way courts, agencies and treatment providers monitor and manage alcohol-involved offenders. In 2013 the company launched the industry’s most comprehensive suite of electronic monitoring technologies, which includes SCRAM Remote Breath®, SCRAM GPS® and SCRAM House Arrest®. The company has since launched software solutions including SCRAM Nexus® to support the adoption and deployment of Evidence-Based Practices, a mobile client engagement tool called SCRAM TouchPoint™, and the first license-based software platform, SCRAM Insight™, to support probation and sobriety programs. SCRAM Systems employs 280 people worldwide and is a privately held company, with headquarters in Littleton, Colorado.