Perceptions of Effectiveness of Texas Alcoholic Beverage Agents on TABC Sponsored Programs and Techniques
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Alcohol is the root cause of many ills in society. Alcohol has proven to be a contributing factor in many serious bodily injuries as a result of assaults, accidents, and alcohol poisonings, and has also been associated in crimes such as sexual assault and homicide. Young people are especially vulnerable to alcohol and its effects and it is widely considered the gateway to other drugs such as marijuana and cocaine. Underage drinking has become a problem in itself since it can destroy the lives of young people in many ways, such as addiction and intoxication manslaughter. Law enforcement at the state and local levels has attempted to address alcohol crimes, sometimes with the help of federal grants. The various techniques developed to deal with alcohol violations range from undercover police activities to innovative educational programs. The agents of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission are, in the State of Texas, the major implementers of these programs. This study surveyed the agents of the TABC regarding various program and techniques designed to address alcohol violations. The measures used to gauge the effectiveness of these programs and techniques include specific and general deterrence, detection of alcohol crimes, cost-effectiveness, ease of implementation, frequency of use and public support. Agents were given the opportunity to rank each program and technique on how well these operations achieved measures such as deterrence on a one to five scale. Minor stings came out on top, achieving no thing less than an overall mean of 4 in all categories followed by the inspections of licensed premises. The other programs and techniques studied include the COPS and Cops in Shops programs, which are both undercover police operations. Traditional source investigations were also studied, along with the educational programs of Project SAVE for kids and retailers and the shock drama Shattered Dreams.