Monday, 15 September 2014

Agencies to pilot anti-social behaviour 'trigger'

The government is to pilot the use of a ‘community trigger’ to force agencies to take action against anti-social behaviour.

Home secretary Theresa May announced yesterday that the Home Office is working with ‘a number of local authorities’ and intends to launch five pilot schemes in the summer.

Under the scheme agencies would be forced to step in if five or more households in an area complain about anti-social behaviour caused by the same individual.

Ms May said the idea is to deal with ‘horror stories of victims reporting the same problem over and over again, and getting no response’.

The government has already been working with eight police forces that are testing new ways of handling anti-social behaviour complaints. These are designed to prioritise people who are vulnerable or have reported a lot of problems.

Ms May said: ‘The eight forces have reported encouraging initial results from the trials – including better working relationships with other agencies, an improved service to the victim and the start of a shift in culture, with call handlers responding to the needs of the victim, rather than just ticking boxes.

‘Most importantly, forces have been able to identify high-risk individuals – often people experiencing the most horrendous abuse - who might otherwise have slipped through the net. And they have taken action to make that abuse stop.’

Readers' comments (7)

  • F451

    At the moment victims of crime in our cities are reporting crime after crime because Theresa May has ordered the police to divert all available resources to hunting down the August 2011 rioters. (Source, Metropolitan Police Liaison Officer - phone and ask if you want confirmation of this as fact!)

    This means people suffering thefts from identified gangs of criminals will continue to suffer those thefts because the police are not pursuing those enquiries.

    Maybe Ms May should put her own house in order before accusing others of failure to police our streets.

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  • Rick Campbell

    'Trigger' happy?

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  • Another day another soundbite from an incompetent politician.

    If this woman spoke to Housing Associations she would know that there are processes in place to investigate every report of ASB. Then the process has to be followed rigidly to stand a chance of winning a case if it eventually gets to court. In many instances if the Police did their job so much would not fall back on the shoulders of overworked Housing Officers, who now have taken on a multitude of roles to fill in where Government cuts have removed specialist agencies such as number of social workers, PCs on the beat etc etc.

    Whenever one of these idiot politicians opens their mouths it seems to be to place the blame the housing provider for the mess the country is in.

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  • Joe Halewood

    Are you exempt from this if you have a cat?

    As it is a 'COMMUNITY trigger' does this apply just to social tenants or to private tenants and homeowners?

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  • My parents and several other elderly residents on the same street in North Manchester have contacted their local councillor and the ASB team with little help being provided. Reports handed to the authorities of Children as young as 5 urinating in peoples gardens and letting fireworks off in the direction of residents properties. Unbelievably, these fireworks are coming from their parents as I have actually seen them being handed over. I have never seen an appropriate adult take charge or discipline their children for the obvious risk issues. Allowing children to have and use fireworks IS abuse. The situation is ridiculous and promoting ill-Health to the elderly residents in the area.
    If you call the non-emergency police number they take days to arrive. Call all the nines and you get told off. Call the anti-social behaviour team and they ask YOU to keep a diary. In the mean time we await some misguided abused child to have his hand blown off. Where is the intervention??

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  • This is interesting as I have been through this process. In my building many of the residents are renting and are only short term. Therefore they are not interested in getting involved in any form of confrontation or litigation in evicting problem residents. I found out in the end you are required to testify in front of the accused in court, a problem if your neighbour is violent.

    I was in a similar situation where our immediate neighbour had a constant flow various people coming to her flat at all hours of the night. This was always punctuated by dogs going berserk barking and eventually these visitors standing outside our front door arguing, taking phone conversations or just drinking beers. Many of these folks clearly had nowhere to be during the day as it would only occur late in the evenings or around midnight every day.

    We tried the neighbourly approach but this fell on deaf ears and we were then targeted and many attempts were made to intimidate us. It took many calls to the council, local police and written letters of all accounts to the local MP. Eventually I realised that the neighbours were in breach of the buildings covenant and promptly requested a lawyer to send a letter of intent to sue for the value of my property as the council were in breach of their contract with me.

    Within 24 hours the council had arranged a meeting with the neighbour, had a written admission of guilt and a signed "Acceptable Behaviour Contract" witnessed by a police officer. We now have not had a single problem and the council now has the legal firepower to enact an eviction because of the signed admission of guilt.

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  • This is a very similar story to your article under related articles dated 30 1 12 that attracted a lot of comments. Nice to also see in related articles, where this issue is also discussed on 11 02 2011, a year ago !! Clearly demonstrates how the government assesses the urgency of serious ASB !However it appears they consider it far more important to cut housing benefit and other disabilty and means tested benefits thereby increasing the pain and suffering of those forced to live on benefits. Maybe we will see more progress being made on ASB in these pages next year, and this article in related articles ??

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