How we deal with anti-social behaviour
We help to ensure residents, visitors and those working in the are do not suffer any form of harassment, alarm or distress caused by others who behave in an anti-social and nuisance manner.
This can mean we give, provide or issue:
Advice and support
We can offer support to you, this can be in relation to victims of anti-social and nuisance behaviour, survivors of domestic abuse and other complex matters such as substance misuse and child and adult safeguarding concerns. We work with a wider range of agencies in order to achieve this. Should you want support in this area please let us know.
Mediation can be a useful tool in helping to resolve instances such as neighbour disputes and other types of disagreements such as noise nuisance, rubbish and waste, and behaviour relating to children.
We believe it is important to initiate early preventative measures when dealing with such disputes as they can escalate into serious anti-social behaviour if it left unaddressed. Mediation can help to resolve individual’s differences and work out how to resolve them or live with those differences.
Verbal warnings or instructions
A verbal warning or instruction maybe given by one of our uniformed or non-uniformed officers from within our team.
Officers within our team have police accredited powers and may request you to modify behaviour or carry out reasonable requests as and when required, failure to do so may result in further action which may include this includes formal notices.
There will be instances where we need to advise and warn residents about their behaviour, we will send a letter informing them about their alleged acts or omissions and the impact this is creating. We may ask them to stop their behaviour or other measures, as we deem appropriate.
Warning letters may be issued for a variety of reported incidents which impacts on the quality of life of others or is causing a detrimental impact to the surrounding area.
Community Protection Warning (CPW)
The Community Protection Warning and Notice process was introduced under the ASB, Crime and Policing Act 2014, A CPW can be issued to all tenure types for a wide range of issues including:
- waste on land and litter
- messy gardens such as waste on land, food waste and debris
- unreasonable smells coming from a property that may or may not be in relation to illegal substances
- animal waste
- loitering in stairwells/blogs of flats
- congregating in specific areas
- threatening behaviour
- unreasonable noise
The warning will request for specific requirements to be carried out which will be in relation to an act or omission.
If incidents have been reported to Nottinghamshire Police and there is a pending investigation, the police investigation will normally take precedent.
Community Protection Notice (CPN)
The Community Protection Notice is a ‘step up’ from a CPW and can be issued to individuals as the CPW can be issues aged 16-years-old and above, which includes businesses.
The purpose of a CPN is to deal and manage with particular, ongoing problems or nuisances, which results in having detrimental effect on others, quality of life by providing formal notice and instruction to those responsible.
A CPN can be issued if the investigating officer can be satisfied, on reasonable grounds, that the conduct of an individual, business or organisation is creating a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality and is persistent or continuing in nature; and is unreasonable. The notice can be appealed in the Magistrates' Court within 21 days.
Failure to comply with a CPN is an offence and can result in a criminal conviction, a maximum fine of £2500 for an individual or £20,000 for a business, or fixed penalty notice of £100.
If you have been served with a CPN you can pay the Fixed Penalty Notice online through our payment system using a debit or credit card.
Acceptable Behaviour Contract (ABC)
An Acceptable Behaviour Contract, commonly referred to as ABCs, are written voluntary agreements between a person who has been involved in anti-social behaviour (ASB) and an organisation.
A number of agencies play a lead role on using ABCs to manager individual behaviour such as local authorities and the police. They can act as a preventative measure to stop certain behaviours from continuing, and as so may require the ABC to focus on positive requirements.
They are commonly used for all age ranges and can be applied in situations such as neighbour disputes or arguments and for instances of other anti-social behaviour such as school attendance, parenting and on street anti-social behaviour. If there is a breach of an ABC this may result in further action.
An Injunction can be used to stop and or prevent someone from doing something, for example causing damage to a property or continued anti-social behaviour within a specific area or locality. Injunctions can also be applied to make an individual do something such as clear an overgrown garden or allowing specific individuals to access their property.
If someone uses such behaviour as racial harassment, or is violent to any person including instances of domestic abuse, we can take immediate action by asking the court for a ‘Without Notice’ injunction against the perpetrator.
Breaching an Injunction is contempt of court, which may result in a fine or imprisonment. Injunctions could also have a power of arrest attached, this condition means that an arrest can be made and the person who has breached the injunction will be presented at court within 24 hours of the arrest.
Council housing enforcement and possession proceedings
Unless the issues are considered high we will attempt to deal with any tenancy breaches by the way of tenancy warning notices in an attempt to modify behaviour or request for actions to be carried out. Should issues be persist or reoccur the investigating officer could serve a Notice of Seeking Possession (NOSP) if you have a secure tenancy or in the instance where you are introductory tenants, a Notice of Possession Proceedings for Introductory Tenants (NOPPIT) may be served.
This is the first step in the legal process, which will illustrate to the tenant/s that court action is being considered against their tenancy. A NOSP will remain active for 12 months and is used to instigate court proceedings at any time during that period.
In certain circumstances and for the most serious forms of anti-social and nuisance behaviour, we may be able to apply for possession using mandatory possession grounds or absolute grounds for possession. If successful, this will result in you being evicted. Use of such processes as highlighted above is under the Housing Act and/or Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.
Prevention of damage by pests
The Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949 stipulates councils are to “take such steps as may be necessary to secure so far as practicable that their district is kept free from rats and mice”.
We may therefore enforce against the owner or the occupier of land relating to the responsible area of concern. We can issue such notices to both owner-occupiers and privately rented property and it will be the role of the investigating officer to determine the responsible persons.
We will seek to address matters informally in the first instance but in certain circumstances may be required to take more immediate action. There is more about dealing with pests in the animals and pests section of the website.
Noise Abatement Notice
It is under Part 3 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 that requires councils to take reasonable and proportionate steps to investigate and explore matters relating to noise nuisance and take action where a statutory nuisance exists.
Should we be satisfied that a statutory nuisance exists, has occurred or is likely to take place in the future we will serve a Noise Abatement Notice.
The notice may mandate that the nuisance to cease completely or be restricted to certain times of day. The notice can be served on the responsible person/s who then has 21 days to appeal; failure to comply may constitute an offence and may result in legal proceedings.
If an individual is found guilty of an offence this could result in a maximum fine of £5000 for domestic premises. Find out more about noise nuisance in the noise section of the website.
Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO)
A CBO is available on conviction for any criminal offence in any criminal court. The order is aimed at tackling and managing the most serious and persistent offenders where their behaviour has brought them before a criminal court.
We work in partnership with Nottinghamshire Police in obtaining evidence to secure Criminal Behaviour Orders for those that require them. A breach of the order is a criminal offence.
A Closure Order can be used for council and policing bodies to close a premises which are being used, or are likely to be used, to commit anti-social behaviour and nuisance or criminality. This approach can be used as an effective tools to protect victims and communities by quickly closing the premises.
How to contact us about anti-social behaviour
If you need more information on any of the ways we tackle anti-social behaviour contact us by:
- email: ASBDuty@ashfield.gov.uk
- telephone: 01623 450000