Information on Anti Social Behaviour and Acceptable Behaviour Contracts

What is Anti Social Behaviour?

Anti-social behaviour is defined as ‘behaviour which causes or is likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress to one or more persons not in the same household’.  It is in a sense any behaviour that prevents others enjoying an acceptable quality of life.

Some examples of anti-social behaviour are:

  • Harassment
  • Vandalism or Graffiti
  • Abandoned vehicles
  • Playing music too loudly
  • Drunk and Disorderly conduct
  • Fly tipping
  • Nuisance bahaviour

What is an Acceptable Behaviour Contract?

An Acceptable Behaviour Contract (ABC) is a written agreement between a person involved in anti-social behaviour, the Community Safety Partnership, the Youth Offending Service and other agencies such as Housing, the Local Authority etc.  The individual concerned agrees in writing not to continue with their unacceptable anti-social behaviour.  To help the young person change their behaviour, the Youth Offending Service will visit to carry out an assessment and discuss any support that is available.

  • This could include things like:
  • Consequences of offending behaviour and the Criminal Justice System
  • Anti-Social Behaviour Programme
  • Substance Misuse
  • Help to access constructive activities
  • Family Support

An ABC is not legally binding, but shows a commitment to considering the effects of Anti-Social Behaviour on others.  An ABC usually last 6 months.

What happens if the anti-social behaviour continues?

If the individual persists with their anti-social behaviour further action will be taken and the young person could become the subject of an Injunction.

An Injunction is  imposed by the Court.  It sets down prohibitions on an individual including exclusions from areas, contacting other people and certain actions which are specific to preventing anti-social behaviour.

The ABC may include an element of Restorative Justice.  This is where the victim(s) of the behaviour are given an opportunity to have their say on how the behaviour is affecting them.  This could mean a face to meeting with the victim(s), some community reparation or a Letter of Explanation from the young person.

In addition action may also be taken under the Housing Act 1985, which will affect a tenancy and could result in an injunction or eviction proceedings.  For further information on this please contact your Landlord.