Trial to combat bad behaviour

THE Government has chosen Boston to take part in a trial that aims to encourage people to stand up against anti-social behaviour and prompt quicker action to tackle trouble.

Home Secretary Theresa May announced last week that the borough, in partnership with West Lindsey, will begin a new ‘trigger’ trial from June 1.

The Home Secretary wants an investigation to be forced into any problem that sparks five complaints but Boston Borough Council’s anti-social behaviour team will step in after just three reports.

The complaints can come from individuals or neighbourhoods and must refer to the same behaviour in a 12-month period where nothing has been done.

In those cases an action plan will be created involving the police, council and other agencies such as housing associations.

Coun Stephen Woodliffe, Boston Borough Council’s portfolio holder for community safety, said: “We are happy to support this initiative, as it should help curb anti-social behaviour by encouraging the public to report such offences.

“Hopefully, this new scheme will reduce the number of instances of anti-social behaviour and help strengthen public confidence.”

New legislation from the Home Secretary may see the scrapping of ASBOs in favour of Criminal Behaviour Orders and Crime Prevention Injunctions to ‘streamline’ the way incidents are dealt with.

Peter Hunn, the council’s principal community safety officer, said Boston was chosen for the trial because it had been at the forefront of intiatives tackling anti-social behaviour.

The council has taken part in work to help the victims of anti-social behavior and has worked with other agencies to work with families who have caused trouble.

Ms May said: “Everyone has the right to feel safe in their own homes and neighbourhoods. Yet thousands of people around the country are still having their every day lives blighted by anti-social behaviour.

“Many don’t even report it, convinced it won’t be taken seriously. And sadly too often they have been right. It’s time to put victims first.”