We know that, where left unchecked, antisocial behaviour can have an overwhelming impact on its victims and, in some cases, on the wider community.
The Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 introduced specific measures designed to give victims and communities a say in the way that complaints of antisocial behaviour are dealt with.
This includes the ASB Case Review (formerly known as the community trigger), which gives victims of persistent antisocial behaviour the right to request a multi-agency case review.
What is it?
If you are a victim of repeat ASB, and if you have reported this (usually 3 times) and are unsatisfied with the response or lack thereof, you can request an ASB Case Review.
This will demand that agencies (including local authorities, the police, local health teams and registered providers of social housing) come together to hold a multi-agency partnership meeting and review:
- how the ASB case has been handled
- what actions have been taken
- how effective these actions have been
- what else the partners can do to tackle the ASB and support the victim.
As a victim you have the right to have your views represented at the meeting, and at the meeting an action plan to stop the ASB will be drafted and shared with the victim.
Each area chooses a lead agency to manage the process. This is usually the council or police.
How to request an anti-social behaviour case review
You can use this Directory to see how to request an ASB Case Review in your area (since it varies slightly depending on where you live). Your local police or local council will also be able to provide you with further information about the anti-social behaviour case review process in your area.
When an anti-social behaviour case review is requested, agencies must decide whether the threshold has been met and communicate this to the victim.
The review encourages a problem-solving approach aimed at dealing with some of the most persistent, complex cases of antisocial behaviour.
Consideration should always be given on how victims can best express the impact that the antisocial behaviour has had on their lives.
If the threshold is met
A case review will be undertaken by the relevant bodies. Agencies will share information related to the case, review what action has previously been taken and decide whether there are additional actions that can be taken. The local anti-social behaviour case review procedure should clearly state the timescales in which the review will be undertaken.
Where most of the agency representatives have been involved in a particular case, consideration should be given to involving somebody independent in the review to provide an external or fresh perspective on the case and the action that has been taken. Consideration should also be given to whether the review meetings should be chaired by an appropriately trained independent lead.
Relevant local agencies should always consider inviting the victim to attend the case review to help all members of the panel understand the level of harm and impact. It is always good practice to have somebody involved in the case review to represent the victim, such as from Victim Support or another organisation providing support for victims in the local area or a representative of the victim.
The victim is then informed of the outcome of the review. Where further actions are necessary an action plan will be discussed with the victim, including timescales.
The anti-social behaviour case review procedure must include a process for the victim to appeal if they are dissatisfied with the way in which the case review has been carried out, or with the decision on whether the threshold was met.
Relevant bodies must respond to the victim at particular points in the process. These include:
- the decision as to whether or not the threshold is met
- the outcome of the review
- any recommendations made as an outcome of the review
Consideration should always be given to how victims can best express the impact that the antisocial behaviour has had on their lives.
Where the victim is considered to be particularly vulnerable, the relevant bodies should consider whether additional practical and emotional support can be offered to the victim.
If the threshold is not met
Although the formal procedures will not be invoked, this does provide an opportunity for the relevant bodies to review the case to determine whether there is more that can be done.
Case studies and research
Agencies have a duty to publish data on the number of triggers received, how many met the threshold, and the number that resulted in further action. This is to ensure transparency of the system and not to judge the performance of the agencies in relation to antisocial behaviour casework.
The data must be published at least annually, although the relevant bodies may wish to publish data more frequently, or to publish additional details. Published information must not include details which could identify victims.
Source: Home Office