Northland had the highest drink driving rates in New Zealand. As a result a recidivist drink drivers Programme called the Drive SOBA Programme (DSP) commenced in Whangarei in June 2007 to address the high rate. The DSP is evidenced based on the ‘risk, need and responsivity principles’ of what interventions work to reduce offending behaviour, with the aim of reducing re-offending. It consists of 12 group sessions and two individual sessions. An evaluation, 2 years after the DSP commenced, found a 5% re-offending rate for those that completed the programme. In addition for participants that completed they reduced their alcohol consumption with evidence of reduction up to 1 year post programme. Since 2010 the DSP has been delivered throughout Northland and has been well attended. A further evaluation of the DSP was conducted from June 2007 to June 2011. The data on re-offending at the end of August 2011, found an 8% re-offending rate for those that completed the programme. The contribution this programme has made to the field is a reduction in recidivist drink driving, 92% had not re-offended. Further to this, this past year Whangarei District had the lowest road death toll since 1970. It is acknowledged by other organisations concerned with road safety that along with other initiatives the DSP has contributed to this reduction. Researches have stated that preventing recidivists from re-offending is most likely to have the greatest impact on Alcohol related crashes.
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