SMADIT ur den misstänkte rattfylleristens perspektiv: en intervjustudie

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Susanne Gustafsson
Inger Forsberg

SMADIT, Joint action against alcohol and drugs in traffic, is a method where the police offer suspected drunk drivers contact with the social services or the dependency care and treatment service, who can offer a consultation and, if needed, suitable treatment. In the present study, 14 suspected alcohol drunk drivers were interviewed about their perceptions and experience of the SMADIT method. The results show that the incident with the drunk driving and its consequences have been a turning point in the suspected drunk drivers' lives. Most of the informants have completely opted out of the alcohol, and in addition, family relationships and life situations have improved. The majority of the informants do not think they will drive drunk in the future. Overall, informants think that SMADIT is a good method in its efforts to prevent drunk driving. Informants' narratives show that the police attitude is very important as most felt that they were in a disgraceful situation. The interviews show that the police attitude and the informant's drinking habits can be crucial to the acceptance of SMADIT. There are also respondents who believed that by accepting the help through SMADIT they would retain the driving license and get alcohol interlocks. The study points out some suggestions that could improve the SMADIT method. It is important that the police always provide the suspected drunk driver with sufficient and accurate verbal information about SMADIT and hand over the written information leaflet with contact information for local social treatment services, even to people who have been free from suspicion of drunk driving. In addition, it is important that a person who answered no to the SMADIT-offer is asked a second time, preferably by a call from the police, or that the suspected drunk driver is asked again when the car key is retrieved. Furthermore, it appears that it is not necessary that the first contact with social treatment services takes place within twenty-four hours. Several of the informants state that they need time for reflection, however, it must not pass too many days before a first contact and meeting is held. Finally, the police motivation to work with SMADIT can be maintained if the social treatment services ask the suspected drunk driver for permission to give a feedback to the police about the person's contact with the social treatment service.

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