We asked Edinburgh clubs what their spiking policies and procedures are
Despite reaching out numerous times, multiple clubs failed to respond
There has been a reported rise in spiking in Edinburgh, with some people even claiming to have been spiked by injection.
The Edinburgh Tab reached out to Edi student’s favourite clubs to ask what they’re doing to keep us safe. We asked them about their policy if someone is spiked within their venue, if someone reports being spiked in their venue after leaving, and the general policies they have in place to prevent spiking.
This is what they said:
When we reached out to WhyNot, they provided us with a list of procedures that they’re implementing in response to the spiking reports. These included:
– A full risk assessment outlining all control measures
– A security team in excess of the industry standard
– Advanced CCTV system of 64 cameras covering the entire venue, which is monitored by a member of management throughout the night
– A random search policy
– Taxis to hospital when required.
They also informed us that they are improving their safe zone facilities in the venue, and have launched a new scheme on their website called Nightwatch. This can be used to report any incidents at why not, and can be accessed by this link.
Whynot also said that they work closely with Street Assist, as well as Police Scotland and the Edinburgh Licensing Board on these matters.
Since we reached out, WhyNot have posted on their Instagram to remind people about the procedures they have in place regarding spiking, including a pledge to give anyone caught spiking others a lifetime ban.
A spokesperson for Bourbon said: “All of our staff are trained and aware of their responsibility to be vigilant for individuals appear overly intoxicated. Any individual in this state will be helped from the venue, and following our duty of care policy, they will be provided with the appropriate care whether that be put in a taxi, street assist or an ambulance if necessary.
“We recommend that anyone who believes to have been spiked goes to the hospital in order to receive the appropriate care and for a toxicology report to be carried out and report to 101 if necessary. We cooperate fully with the police with any reported incidents.
“We have signage located within the club to remind individuals to never leave their drink unattended, all staff know their responsibility in being vigilant for any behaviour which they find suspicious.”
Bourbon also posted on Instagram to address the reports of an increase in spiking incidents, detailing their current measures, additional measures they are in the process of introducing, and a new email address specifically for reporting any incidents or suspicious activity.
Subway’s manager told The Edinburgh Tab what they’d do if they were alerted to someone being spiked within the venue, saying: “We would take them to our first aid room where they would be made comfortable and given water by our on site first aider, then we would establish if they where alone or with friends, and get our door team to contact them if they where still in the venue.
“Depending on the severity of the case, we would either contact Street Assist or an ambulance. If the person is with a friend then we would advise them to attend a hospital. If they where alone we would help them contact a friend or family member, and again advise to go to hospital – they would not be allowed to leave on their own.
“We would take the persons details and try to get them to give us any information they could to help us investigate what happened.”
Additionally, Subway told us their policy if someone had left the club and contacted them the next day to report being spiked, saying: “We would advise them to get checked out at a hospital. We would then take all the details of when they where in and what they where wearing so we could investigate on our CCTV system, which is very clear in all areas of the building. If any foul play was shown we would contact Police Scotland and report the crime.”
Moreover, Subway also outlined the general policies they have in place to prevent spiking: “We employ a team of trained door staff to look out for any strange behaviour from patrons, and look out for people who appear to be in trouble.
“Our floor staff remove unattended drinks and are also trained to look out for any strange behaviour. We display posters around the venue to advise people to report to staff if they see anyone that is in trouble or if they feel in any way ill.
“We have three or more trained first aiders on shift every night . All instances of suspected or confirmed spikings are recorded and kept on site.”
Since we reached out to Subway, the instagram account @girlsnightinedinburgh have also posted a statement from Subway’s manager. In this statement, Subway have promised the introduction of new actions to ensure the safety of customers, including lids for every drink.
Big Cheese (EUSA)
A spokesperson for EUSA said: “We’d like to highlight our commitment to our Safe Spaces Policy, which applies to all our venues, and our events which might take place in another venue.”
“As outlined in this policy, we have a zero tolerance approach to all forms of harassment, abuse, discrimination and violence. Alongside our Safe Spaces Policy, we are also members of The Good Night Out scheme, an independent campaign which aims to prevent sexual harassment in the night-time economy. As an organisation we have signed the Good Night Out pledge, which says that we have a zero tolerance policy towards sexual harassment and will ensure our staff are fully trained on addressing incidents.”
“We encourage all students and visitors in our spaces customers to report incidents which make them feel uncomfortable or unsafe to a member of staff who can offer further support, including referring them to the Students’ Association’s Advice Place, or contacting the police if necessary.”
The Liquid Room
The Liquid Room provided us with a step by step guide of what they train their staff to do if a spiking situation does arise, saying: “All reports will be dealt with in a sensitive and confidential manner. Our procedure is to take the person to a safe quiet room with a first aider and security, speak to them clearly and calmly to find out the series of events leading up to the incident, and then call the appropriate emergency services.
“We will also find out what, when and where the incident happened and have the CCTV footage reviewed. We will them investigate and try to identify and find the perpetrator. If the offender is still in the venue we will hold them for the police.”
They also provided us with a list of the venues safety measures and practices they have in place:
“With over 90 CCTV cameras and customer lists of attendees, we will look into any reports of crimes or attempted crimes in The Liquid Room as a matter of urgency. We also do bag searches and random body searches.
“There are ‘Ask Angela’ and ‘Angel Shot’ campaign posters within our premises, with our bar and security staff trained on the schemes.
“We also work alongside charities such as Crew 2000 and Street Assist, and are currently in talks with other safety organisations and societies to provide other safety services and measures for customers. We’re always looking to see where we can improve further.”
The Liquid Room have also recently posted on their Instagram with an outline of their safety procedures.
We’ve reached out to Sneaky Petes on two different platforms, but have not received a reply.
However, they have acknowledged the current increase in spiking incidents, by posting on Instagram a series of pictures with advice of how to spot, deal with, and avoid spiking. However, they did not include any of their own club spiking policies.
We have attempted to contact Garibaldi’s multiple times. After calling them twice and leaving a message, we finally got through to a staff member who claimed to have not received the DMs and told us to “publish whatever you want”.
This is particularly disappointing as claims of being spiked at Garibaldi’s have recently come out, including a story posted on @girlsnightinedinburgh, in which they claimed Gari’s bouncers let a man who attempted to spike them back into the club.
We have reached out to Garibaldi’s again for a comment on this incident, but they have failed to respond.
We’ve also reached out to Hive, Atik, Three Sisters, Lulus, La Belle Angele and Mash House asking about their spiking policies, but have received no response.