What to consider before reporting ASB?
Approaching your neighbour
If you know who is causing the problem and you feel safe to do so, speak to your neighbour. Explain how their activities or behaviour is affecting you. They might not be aware and likely to appreciate you letting them know. This approach can often help to build and sustain neighbourly relationships. We've put together some tips to help you resolve problems with your neighbours, you can also download our 'Dear Neighbour' cards.
Is the behaviour ASB?
Particularly when living in close proximity to our neighbours, sometimes they may do things that irritate us, but think about what they are actually doing and whether this is antisocial.
Keeping a record
Write down details of the incident(s) when it occurs. When you contact us to report ASB, you will be asked for this information as it will help us deal with your concerns. Our ASB diary sheets will help you do this.
Although you may make reports of ASB anonymously, sometimes this can limit the actions we can take. Please be reassured we will not disclose your identity if you do not want us to.
Who else should I tell?
It may also be necessary for you to report the incident to another agency. If the incident is serious or criminal in nature you should contact the police. If the incident relates to environmental issues such as pets, noise or rubbish dumping, then you should also report to your local council offices.
Local neighbourhood watch
People join Neighbourhood Watch or Home Watch groups to make the areas where they live safe, friendly and pleasant places to be, find out if there is a local neighbourhood watch scheme in your area.
What happens after I make an ASB report?
When we receive your report, we will make contact with you to agree the next step and send an ASB support pack. We will try to do this as quickly as possible, but as a minimum this will be as follows.
- within 1 working day for high risk incidents
- 5 working days for medium risk.
We will confirm details of your report and agreed steps in writing. We will also agree a timescale with you for keeping you informed of progress. This is called a case review date.
All reports will be dealt with promptly and sensitively in line with your views and wishes. However, it’s important to know that reports take time to deal with. We’ll discuss your report with you in confidence and won’t reveal your identify to your neighbour or anybody else unless you agree to this being done, but in most cases, the first step to take would be for us to contact the person causing you a problem. They would need to be made aware of their behaviour and the problems that it’s causing so that they have an opportunity to change their behaviour.
After we’ve spoken to them, we’d then monitor the situation to see whether their behaviour has improved or got worse. In order to do this, we’ll need you to help us by:
- Writing down the dates and times that problems happen
- Telling us how it has affected you and made you feel
- Letting us know if anyone else has witnessed the problem as well
Wherever possible, we try to sort out disputes as quickly as possible. However, in more serious cases, we may need to take legal action. This is considered to be a last resort and in order to do this, the Court would require good supporting evidence.
How does Partners decide which action to take?
We take the following factors into account when considering what our next steps will be.
- The type of behaviour
- The severity and frequency of incidents
- The evidence that is available
- The impact that the behaviour is having
- Who else is being affected
- Whether the person/people whose behaviour is causing problems has been given an opportunity to change it (depending on the severity of it) and whether there has been an improvement
- What other intervention(s) has/ have been considered or tried so far