We believe that everyone has a right to enjoy living in their property free from harassment, nuisance, annoyance and anti-social behaviour (ASB).
The Anti-Social Behaviour and Crime Act 2014 defines ASB as the following:
- Conduct that has caused, or is likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress to any person
- Conduct capable of causing nuisance or annoyance to a person in relation that person's occupation of residential premises, or
- Conduct capable of causing housing-related nuisance or annoyance to any person
What is anti-social behaviour?
It comes in many forms and anyone can be a victim regardless of age, race or gender.
Anti-social behaviour can include low level, persistent nuisance to serious criminal incidents. Examples include:
- Drug dealing
- Violence and threats of violence and intimidation or harassment
- Racial and homophobic harassment and abuse
- Criminal damage and graffiti
- Alcohol related nuisance
- Street drinking and begging
- Verbal abuse to neighbours, Council staff and contractors
- Leaving rubbish in communal areas
- Pet noise and dog fouling
- Fly tipping
- Noise nuisance
What is not anti-social behaviour?
Some activities cause annoyance, often because of a difference in people's lifestyles.
Behaviour that would not normally be considered to be ASB includes:
- Young people gathering socially - unless they are being intimidating to individuals
- Children playing in the street or communal areas
- DIY and repairing - unless late at right
- Being unable to park outside your own home
- Civil disputes between neighbours e.g. shared driveways
What should be done when the problems start?
If you feel you are being subjected to anti-social behaviours then if you can, speak to the person involved to see if you can resolve the matter.
Try not to shout or lose your temper as this can make the situation worse and could lead to action being taken against you. Think about how you would like to be approached if someone had a problem with something that you were doing.
Individuals have the right to their chosen lifestyle as long as this does not spoil the quality of life for others.
If you feel you cannot speak to the person, or if the problem continues, then please report it to us.
The sooner you report ASB to us the easier it is for us to gather evidence to support your allegation e.g. CCTV footage.
Reporting anti-social behaviour
You can report ASB in a number of ways:
- Email us firstname.lastname@example.org
- Call us on 01303 853000
Is it after hours or an emergency? - Call Kent Police immediately. Does it feel like the situation could get heated or violent very soon? Is someone in immediate danger? Do you need support right away? If so, please call 999 now.
If you're deaf or hard of hearing, use our textphone service 60066 or text us on 999 if you've pre-registered with the emergencySMS service.
A Neighbourhood Advisor will contact you to discuss the problem and ask you more details.
They will advise you whether any action can be taken and if so, what it might be. This action will then be agreed with you and put into an action plan.
Recording anti-social behaviour
You will be asked to keep a diary of incidents so that we can assess the frequency and severity of the problem. Diary sheets are important records made at the time the incident takes place. In very severe cases where County Court action may become necessary your diary may be produced as evidence.
Diary sheets should include:
- The start and end times of the incident
- As much detail as possible, including the names of those involved
- What was said (especially bad language and threats if there are any)
- Who else witnessed the incident
Any criminal behaviour should be reported to the Police. Ask for a serial or crime number and enter that on your diary sheet.
Completed diary sheets can be handed into or sent to us at the Folkestone & Hythe District Council:
Castle Hill Avenue
Alternatively your Neighbourhood Adviser may collect them from you and also discuss the incidents at the same time.
What will Housing Tenancy & Leaseholder Services do to stop anti-social behaviour?
We treat all reports of anti-social behaviour very seriously and will use the appropriate action to resolve it sensitively.
We will do our best to keep you informed of the action we are taking, however we cannot reveal confidential information.
Our actions may include warnings and visits to the perpetrator. We will offer support to help them keep to the terms of their tenancy agreement, which may include a voluntary written agreement. Sometimes these actions are often all that is needed to stop the problems.
We will not reveal the details of where the information has come from without your permission.
If the problem continues, we will consider legal against the perpetrator. This may mean taking out an injunction to prevent them from causing further nuisance, or taking eviction action if the offender is a tenant.
We will ask you and other witnesses to be prepared to attend court and give evidence based on the incidents recorded in the diary sheets.
A court will need to be satisfied that it is 'reasonable and proportionate' to make a court order on a person's home. The court may make a Possession Order that could lead to eviction.