Anti-Social Behavior

Anti-social behaviour is a problem that can seriously affect your quality of life.

If you are experiencing anti-social behaviour, please report it to us. Click here or call 0115 9166 066.

Remember: we will be able to intervene more effectively if we have evidence of what’s been happening. You may like to keep an ASB Diary to record incidents when they happen.

 

 What is anti-social behaviour?

There is no exact definition of anti-social behaviour. At Tuntum, we describe it as

                                   “persistent behaviour that causes or is likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress to others.”  

Anti-social behaviour can range from serious acts of violence and harassment, to more everyday incidents such a noise nuisance or vandalism of the estate or local area. It may or may not count as a criminal act.

 

Examples of anti-social behaviour include

  • intimidation of neighbours and others through threats or actual violence
  • harassment, including racial harassment
  • verbal abuse
  • homophobic behaviour
  • systematic bullying of children in public recreation grounds, on the way to school or even on school grounds, if normal school disciplinary procedures do not stop the behaviour
  • abusive behaviour aimed at causing distress or fear to certain people, for example, elderly or disabled people
  • noise
  • dumping rubbish
  • animal nuisance, including dog fouling
  • vandalism, property damage and graffiti

We take an uncompromising stance when we tackle anti-social behaviour. This means we will not allow any acts to take place where our residents can’t enjoy peace and quiet in their own home and feel safe and secure in the area they live. We believe people have a right to enjoy life in their own way without affecting or being affected those living and working around them.

 

How we can help

Mediation

Mediation is an impartial service provided by trained mediators who will help you to resolve conflicts with neighbours. If you agree to this service, we will refer you to a local mediation service provider, or you could contact them yourself.

Verbal and written warnings

If we have enough evidence, we will warn tenants that their actions are breaking the tenancy conditions. This stage gives the person causing the nuisance a chance to change their behaviour. If the problems continue and the complaint moves on to court action, the fact that we have served a warning shows that we have taken reasonable steps to attempt to resolve the problem.

Acceptable behaviour contracts (ABCs)

These are usually used to stop anti-social behaviour from children and young people but can be used with adults. An ABC is not an admission of guilt. It is a contract that sets out the behaviour that is unacceptable. It is often used together with other types of support to help the person change their behaviour. An ABC usually lasts for six months.

Injunctions

These are orders made by the court. They make someone do something or stop doing something. We can ask for an injunction to make a council tenant keep to their tenancy conditions. We can also sometimes ask for injunction against someone who is not a council tenant. They can only be used against someone who is aged over 18.

They are used for general breaches of tenancy where we would not want to evict. For example, if a tenant has an overgrown garden and refuses to tidy it we would ask for an injunction to force the tenant to maintain their garden and keep to their tenancy terms

Injunctions are also used where there is an urgent need to protect someone from violence or threats of violence. We would ask for the person to be arrested if they break the injunction order.

Breaking the terms of an injunction can result in a prison sentence.

Tenancy notices

These are the legal notices that start possession proceedings which could end in eviction.

Possession proceedings

As a last resort we may need to ask the court to evict someone from their home. To do this we have to prove they have broken their tenancy conditions and that it is reasonable to evict them. In some cases the courts may grant a postponed or suspended possession order. This means that a person can stay in their home as long as they comply with certain conditions, such as not causing any more anti-social behaviour.

Starter tenancies

New tenants are given a starter tenancy which lasts for 12 months. Possession proceedings are much simpler and quicker for a starter tenant than for a secure tenant – this means that if problems arise we can deal with them quickly. Although a starter tenant has the right to appeal a possession order, they do not have the opportunity to provide a defence at court.

If a starter tenant (or a member of their family or visitors) has caused anti-social behaviour, we may chose to extend the starter tenancy period by six months to allow the tenant to change their behaviour.