Flip flops will replace "inappropriate" footwear say police
Late night revellers in a Devon resort are being offered flip-flops to help them get home.
Police in Torquay say it makes it easier for women, rather than struggling along in high heels.
Campaigners The Taxpayers' Alliance said the £30,000 cost of the scheme was an "idiotic waste of money".
Police say it is part of a wider package of the measures including advice on safer sex and a police team who have reduced crime.
The flip-flops, which will be given out from December, will have messages about safe alcohol limits printed on them.
The footwear will be paid for by £30,000 of funding secured from the Home Office by Safer Communities Torbay, an alliance of local authority, police and health services.
The scheme is the latest late-night policing idea in Torbay where "mop cops" order people who urinate in the street to clean up after themselves.
Matthew Elliott of the Taxpayers' Alliance said: "This is an idiotic waste of money.
"People don't pay taxes for drunk women to get free flip-flops, they want police to fight crime.
"Police aren't there to be an emergency supply of flat shoes."
Supt Chris Singer, Torbay Police Commander, said the flip-flops were part of a wider campaign to make the area safer at night.
These included extra officers on duty at night in the harbour area and safer-sex advice, as well as the "mop cops".
He said: "I would be surprised if the cost of the flip-flops was more than £200.
"This is part of a forward-thinking, innovative partnership to make it a safer place to be."