Leicestershire Police is supporting the first national Antisocial Behaviour (ASB) Week.
Running from July 19 to 25, ASB Awareness Week – Making Communities Safer aims to encourage communities to take a stand against ASB and highlight the options available to those facing it.
The week of action is bringing together people and organisations from across the country to take a stand and work together to make communities safer.
Organised by community safety specialists Resolve, ASB Awareness Week is being backed by the Home Office, Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG), Local Government Association (LGA), National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) and the National Fire Chiefs’ Council (NFCC).
Behaviour that is antisocial is conduct that has caused, or is likely to cause, harassment, alarm or distress to any person; conduct capable of causing nuisance or annoyance to a person in relation to that person’s occupation of residential premises; conduct capable of causing housing-related nuisance or annoyance to any person.
There are three main categories for antisocial behaviour, depending on how many people are affected:
Personal antisocial behaviour is when a person targets a specific individual or group
Nuisance antisocial behaviour is when a person causes trouble, annoyance or suffering to a community
Environmental antisocial behaviour is when a person’s actions affect the wider environment, such as public spaces or buildings
Leicestershire Police is supporting ASB awareness week by helping communities recognise ASB, sharing ways to report it and by promoting examples about how our dedicated neighbourhood teams are proactively tackling issues.
Leicestershire Police’s ASB officer, PC Suzy Willett, said: “As a force we deal with numerous cases of ASB, some are short term and some cases take longer to resolve.
“If you are aware of antisocial behaviour taking place please report it – if it’s not reported we won’t necessarily know about it.
“We work in conjunction with partner agencies such as local councils, housing, children and family wellbeing services in a combined approach to tackle ASB to achieve the best results for the communities we serve.”
Here are some examples of how we have recently dealt with instances of ASB, both reactively and proactively:
A property on the Saffron Lane Estate has recently had a closure order served further to numerous reports of ASB. Members of this community contacted us to report the ASB which was causing upset and disorder. This was a very positive outcome for all involved.
The Market Harborough and Wigston NPA have been looking at visibility and presence on parks. This was tackled via a dedicated ASB Operation and a community meeting with Harborough District Council, the force and the Community Safety Partnership. To bring this to life they have introduced Cops on Parks (COPS), where officers/staff have beat consultations on parks at peak times. This allows them to engage better with young people and listen to their concerns.
Within this short video you will meet PC Gary Bailey who talks about how he, along with support from various local support agencies and charities, have helped tackle ASB in Loughborough town centre and the help and support provided to those committing ASB and those affected by it: Tackling antisocial behaviour and begging in Loughborough - YouTube
A vulnerable individual in Hinckley was placed into new accommodation. Numerous calls about ASB at the address were received by us and the council. He was offered advice, support and help but the disturbances carried on well into the evening and night and the unnecessary noise continued. The force and the council worked together to get a partial closure order for the address so that only the person registered to live there was permitted to be in the property. This gave us more opportunity to safeguard the individual as well as the powers to arrest people who were not supposed to be there.
There was an address of concern in Blaby recently where there had been allegations of drug taking and prostitution taking place. Officers again worked with the local council on joint visits and the offer of help and support to the home’s occupier as a wraparound support to ensure her safety. The ASB continued for several weeks and more complaints were received. She was served with a community protection notice followed by a fixed penalty notice but unfortunately neither worked. A closure order would have been the last resort but the occupier finally accepted help before it got to that stage and she admitted to losing control of the property. She is now accessing help and support and the people who were using her home to commit ASB have been removed knowing that it is an offence for them to return.
Suzy continues: “Communities and neighbourhoods are a vital resource in helping us to identify and deal with ASB. If you are suffering ASB please report it. We’d like to thank everyone who takes the time to make a report as you are helping to make the place where you live better for everyone.”
Rebecca Bryant OBE, chief executive of Resolve, said: “We need to change the way we think about ASB. It is not low-level crime. It devastates the lives of victims and communities and can be a precursor to more serious crime.
“As the nation begins to recover from the impact of the pandemic and our society and economy celebrates the start of return to normal life, it is important that the challenge of ASB continues to be given the priority it needs nationally and locally so that people feel safe in their homes and communities.
“It is vital to develop partnership approaches across communities to deal with the growing challenges around ASB.
“Everyone has the right to feel safe in their home and community.”