Online Program

Exploring the association between old firm soccer derbies and incidents of community and domestic violence in glasgow, Scotland

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Damien Williams, BSc(Hons), PhD, FRSPH, AFHEA, MBPsS, School of Medicine, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Scotland
Fergus Neville, BSc(Hons) MRes PhD, School of Medicine, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Scotland
Prof Peter D. Donnelly, MD MPH MBA FRCP FFPH, Professor of Public Health Medicine, University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Fife, Scotland, United Kingdom
Background/purpose Violence is a significant public health problem in Glasgow, Scotland's largest city. There has been increased concern regarding the violence surrounding soccer derbies between Glasgow's two largest teams, Rangers and Celtic (the “Old Firm”). While media reports and police statements often make a causal link between incidents of community and domestic violence and Old Firm derbies, these have been based on limited comparisons lacking statistical analysis. This paper describes the initial findings of an on-going study exploring the association between Old Firm derbies and incidents of police-recorded community and domestic violence within Glasgow. Methods Data comprised the number of reports of community violence (assault, serious violence, etc.) and domestic incidents (covering physical, sexual, mental, and emotional abuse) for 2008-2011. Comparisons were made for the 24-hours following kick-off for every Old Firm derby (n=21) and Scotland International (n=13) and two controls (Old Firm-control and Scotland-control). Data for each control was taken for the same 24-hour period 7-days following the corresponding Old Firm derby or Scotland International. Results/outcomes There were significantly higher numbers of incidents of community violence and domestic incidents for Old Firm derbies relative to Scotland International's, Scotland-control's and Old Firm-control's; however, there were no significant differences in the number of reports for the three comparators. Conclusions Initial findings suggest that Old Firm games are associated with increased levels of community and domestic violence relative to appropriate comparators. Further quantitative and qualitative research will explore this association to inform violence prevention interventions for Old Firm derbies.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Assess the method used to explore the association between Old Firm derbies and violence, particularly the appropriateness of the comparators. Discuss potential factors underpinning the increased levels of violence associated with Old Firm derbies.

Keyword(s): Violence, Criminal Justice

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been involved in research and evaluation within the field of violence and violence prevention for four years, having presented at national and international conferences (including APHA) and published papers on these issues.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 4173.0: Global violence and injury