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Groups of up to 100 rowdy teens moved from coastal path

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GROUPS of up to 100 teenagers have been moved on, and large amounts of alcohol seized, as police respond to concerns over antisocial behaviour near the coastal path in Burry Port.

Dyfed-Powys Police officers are using powers under the Antisocial Behaviour Act to disperse groups of youngsters meeting to drink alcohol in woodland and sand dunes off the path, many of whom had travelled to the area to meet up.

Plans had been put in place ahead of the Easter holidays as part of a joint operation with Carmarthenshire Council to deal with anticipated gatherings following the easing of travel restrictions – and in particular to target groups of young people meeting in Burry Port.

A Section 34 Order remains in place covering Burry Port and the coastal path from Pembrey Harbour to Pwll, and allows officers to move people out of the area and prevent them from returning for up to 48 hours.

Sergeant Gemma Davies said: “A number of calls have been received from residents in Burry Port who are concerned about the behaviour of large groups of young people in the town.

“Proactive action has been taken, with plans put in place to deal with such issues last weekend and into the bank holiday.

“Historically, gatherings of this kind in the area has resulted in antisocial behaviour and criminal damage, so we are putting additional resources in place to allow officers to respond swiftly and prevent matters from escalating.”

Llanelli Neighbourhood Policing Team, supported by response officers, are carrying out high visibility patrols along the coastal path, covering areas known to be popular with youngsters, and work is being carried out with Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service’s arson reduction team.

On Saturday night, around 50 teenagers spotted heading towards woodland were dispersed and advised to go home. Around 100 bottles of alcohol were seized from the youngsters, who were aged between 13 and 16.

Last night (Tuesday, March 30), officers were called to the harbour, where large groups had again gathered. Around 100 teenagers were sent home from the area between the harbour and the Shoreline caravan park, with large amounts of litter and alcohol bottles left behind, and damage caused by fires in the sand dunes.

Licensing checks are being carried out at shops in the area to remind them of the laws around selling alcohol.

Sgt Davies said: “We will continue to patrol the area and will not hesitate to disperse groups, sending the message that we will not tolerate antisocial behaviour of this kind.

“We would like to appeal directly to parents to be aware of where their children are, and what they are doing. This behaviour is distressing for people living in Burry Port, and we are urging you to be accountable for your children’s actions.

“We understand that the past few months have been difficult, and that children want to see their friends, but please do your best to ensure they are adhering to regulations that are in place for all our safety.”

Officers from Llanelli and Ammanford Neighbourhood Policing Teams carried out additional high visibility patrols in key tourist areas to ensure regulations were being adhered to despite the increased number of visitors as travel restrictions eased.

Visits were made with Carmarthenshire Council officers to 50 caravan and self-catering establishments across the county to ensure compliance with the new restrictions and offer advice to those who needed it.

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Health

Those eligible for the Spring Covid-19 booster should get jabbed by end of June

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ALL those eligible for the Spring Covid-19 booster are being urged to take up their offer of the vaccine before the end of next month.

A deadline of 30 June has been introduced to ensure all those eligible for the spring booster will have a long-enough interval between this and the autumn 2022 booster, if they are also eligible.

An announcement by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) about which groups will be eligible for the autumn booster is due to be published shortly.

The JCVI has advised that people over-75, older care home residents and all those aged 12 years and over who are immunosuppressed are eligible for the spring booster.

Those who are 75 on or before 30 June, can get their booster at any point up to the deadline.

Health Minister Eluned Morgan said: “It is important we continue our very high take up levels of the vaccine to help protect us against the risk of serious illness from Covid-19. I would urge everyone who is offered a spring booster vaccination takes up the invitation.”

If someone eligible for a spring booster has had a Covid infection recently, they will need to wait 28 days from the date they tested positive before they can be vaccinated. They will still be able to get vaccinated after 30 June as part of this campaign if they have to postpone their appointment.

All those eligible for spring boosters will be invited by their health board or GP.

It is not too late for anyone who needs a primary dose (first, second or third) to be vaccinated.

Please check for local arrangements.

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Health

Young people in Wales being failed when moving from child to adult mental health services

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MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES are failing young people when they move from child to adult services, says a mental health charity.

Mind Cymru is calling for Welsh Government to make urgent changes to improve the system.

Nia Evans, Children and Young People Manager at Mind Cymru, said: “Young people have told us that their needs, thoughts, and feelings about moving to adult services are often unheard, or ignored.

“Welsh Government must support Local Health Boards to make sure this doesn’t happen, change the way services are run and make sure our young people are being heard and properly cared for.”

Mind Cymru has published a report, in ate the result of interviews with young people about their experiences of moving from Specialist Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services – (SCAMHS) to AMHS.

They highlighted five key areas where services are failing young people:
– Poor information offered to young people, particularly on their rights
– Inconsistent use and follow through of care and treatment plans
– High thresholds for SCAMHS and AMHS referrals to be accepted
– Feeling abandoned / cut off from SCAMHS
– Age still dominates decision making process for moving from SCAMHS to AMHS

Nia Evans said: “Any one of these issues could make the process of moving from children’s services to adult services difficult for our young people. But often, more than one is happening at any one time.”

“Our young people have a right to care and support from a mental health system that has been put in place to help them recover. Action must be taken immediately to make sure support systems are robust and doing the job they were designed to do.”

Mind Cymru is asking people to email their Member of the Senedd (MS) and amplify the voices of these young people whose experiences are often unheard, and use the #SortTheSwitch hashtag on social media.

The full report is available here, including what a good move from SCAMHS to AMHS would look like for young people, and where the current system could improve.

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Business

Average UK price of diesel hits record of more than £1.80 a litre

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LESS than two months after Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a 5p a litre cut on the average price of fuel – diesel prices have reached a record high price of 180.29p a litre.
The previous high of 179.90p was recorded on March 23rd 2022 – the day of the Spring Statement from Sunak.

In recent weeks, the UK government has tried to move away from its reliance on importing Russian oil, following President Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Worryingly for drivers of petrol cars, the price per litre is fast approaching the record levels of 167.3p per litre set on March 22nd.

This latest price rise adds another challenge to UK households, as the cost of living crisis continues to impact families across the country.

RAC fuel spokesperson Simon Williams said: “Sadly, despite the Chancellor’s 5p a litre duty cut the average price of a litre of diesel has hit a new record high at 180.29p.”

“Efforts to move away from importing Russian diesel have led to a tightening of supply and pushed up the price retailers pay for diesel.”

“While the wholesale price has eased in the last few days this is likely to be temporary, especially if the EU agrees to ban imports of Russian oil.”

“Unfortunately, drivers with diesel vehicles need to brace themselves for yet more pain at the pumps. Had Mr Sunak reduced VAT to 15% as we call on him to do instead of cutting duty by 5p, drivers of diesel vehicles would be around 2p a litre better off, or £1 for every full tank.”

“As it is, drivers are still paying 27p VAT on petrol and 29p on diesel, which is just the same as before the Spring Statement.”

“The average price of petrol is also on the rise having gone up nearly 3p a litre since the start of the month to 166.65p which means it’s less than a penny away from the all-time high of 167.30p set on 22 March.”

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