Surrey Police shines spotlight on anti-social behaviour
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Last week, as part of a national ASB Awareness Week, our safer neighbourhood teams (SNTs) joined forces with partners to shine a spotlight on anti-social behaviour (ASB) across Surrey, and to raise awareness of the many different ways in which we can tackle ASB within communities and provide help and support to those affected.
Some of the events and activities that took place across our boroughs, which were shared on our social media channels throughout the course of the week, include:
Surrey Heath held several Meet the Beat events where residents could discuss local ASB issues.
Runnymede SNT put a partial closure order on a property in Egham to protect a victim of cuckooing and restore quality of life to neighbours affected by the associated anti-social behaviour.
Epsom and Ewell Beat were out on Longmead Estate raising awareness of ASB issues with the local council and Rosebery Housing.
Spelthorne SNT operated out of Ashford Library, where they met with members of the public to offer support and guidance and crime prevention advice.
In Reigate and Banstead, police and local partners signed an ASB pledge board to show their commitment to tackling ASB using a multi-agency approach.
Tandridge Beat spent time outside Morrisons in Oxted speaking to members of the public about their concerns.
SNTs in Waverley, Guildford, Mole Valley and Woking conducted foot patrols around their local communities.
On social media, we spent the week sharing advice and guidance on anti-social behaviour and where to report instances in your local area. The posts touched on criminal damage such as graffiti, neighbour disputes, the Community Trigger, fly-tipping, and vehicle nuisance.
ASB is not low level and can have a huge impact on the lives of individuals and communities. Jo Grimshaw, who leads on tackling ASB for the Force said: “Our teams work hard to deal with anti-social behaviour on a daily basis – it’s part of our core business.
“The national week of action gives us the opportunity to highlight the work we do to protect people and communities from those who think it’s acceptable to behave in a threatening, aggressive or anti-social manner.
“Anti-social behaviour will most likely affect everybody at some point, and some may think nothing of it, but if it is having an impact on you, please do not suffer in silence.
“We won’t tolerate situations where people are too frightened to walk outside of their own home in case they come face-to-face with an intimidating neighbour, or they have to endure excessive noise and foul language from others. Nor will we accept groups of drug dealers who target and exploit vulnerable people and take over their homes as a base to deal drugs.
“Where there’s a problem with ASB, we work with victims to deal with the issues they are facing, as well as with those behaving in an anti-social way, to give them an understanding of the impact of their actions and discourage further unwanted behaviour.”
We work closely with our partners to ensure that ASB victims can be referred to the appropriate agency if they are better placed to offer support and get the right outcome. If a civil resolution cannot be reached, there are a range of enforcement options available, including warning letters, closure orders, criminal behaviour orders and criminal prosecution.
If you have reported an incident three or more times in six months and feel you are not being listened to or that the issues are still happening or escalating, you are entitled to ask for a review of your case. This is called the Community Trigger, and you can activate it through your Local Authority: https://asbhelp.co.uk/community-trigger/community-trigger-directory/
In the last year, we’ve issued:
47 Closure Orders
9 Criminal Behaviour Orders
57 Reactive Dispersal Orders
Over 300 warning letters.
These orders are proving very effective in reducing the behaviour of those committing ASB, as well as giving some respite to residents and the community.
It can be really confusing for victims to work out which agency is responsible for tackling each of the different types of ASB.