03 July, 2023
Despite often being described as a 'low level crime' - the impact of anti-social behaviour ('ASB') is often significant. Following research into the impact of ASB on individuals and local communities, a report published by the Home Office on 27th March 2023 found that 93% of participants reported experiencing at least one emotional impact, and 66% reported experiencing behavioural changes in least one way, due to ASB.
The Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, enacted with the aim to put victims first, introduced specific measures designed to give victims and communities a say in the way that complaints of ASB are dealt with.
One such measure was the introduction of the ASB Case Review (formerly called the 'Community Trigger'). This is a process where victims of repeat and serious anti-social behaviour can request a multi-agency review of their case.
Despite this, the ASB Case Review has been poorly advertised and underutilised. Research by RESOLVE UK found that just 6% of people had heard of the ASB Case Review and only 2% of people fully understood how the Review worked.
Within Manchester, the Community Safety Partnership ('CSP') brings together organisations to tackle crime and disorder. It is the CSP that is responsible for undertaking ASB Case Reviews in the region. The relevant bodies of the CSP are:
An individual or a third party on the victim's behalf (providing they have the victim's written consent) can request an ASB Case Review from CSP. For a review to take place, a threshold, set locally, has to be met.
In Manchester, the threshold requires a victim of ASB to have made three complaints of ASB in the past six months. Each complaint must have been made within one month of each?of the incident(s) taking place. Other factors that will be considered by the CSP are:
To request an ASB Case Review, details of the dates/times of each complaint, who the complaint was made to and information regarding the ASB is required and a request for a ASB Case Review can be made in the following ways:
Once an ASB Case Review is requested, a member of the ASB Action Team on behalf of the CSP will acknowledge the request. Permission will be sought from the victim or third party for information to be shared with CSP and any other relevant organisation.
If the threshold is met, the CSP have a duty to conduct an ASB Case Review. This is coordinated by Manchester City Council and will involve a review of what action has been taken, the way the complaints have been responded to, and, if necessary, recommendations will be made to progress the case.
If the threshold is not met, whilst the formal Review will not be raised, this nevertheless provides the opportunity for the CSP to review the case to determine whether there is more than can be done.
Despite the intention behind the ASB Case Review, its underuse within Manchester is clear. The 2022 ASB Case Review Statistics from Manchester City Council confirmed that:
Whilst ASB Case Reviews are commonly centred around requests being made by repeat victims of ASB, it is important to note that Registered Providers ('RPs') are also able to use this process. Our ASB Team have been involved in cases where RPs have utilised the Review process to their advantage where they believe that their residents' voices are not being heard, or where their complaints are not being properly actioned, prioritised or understood by statutory agencies. Accordingly, the ASB Case Review can be an important instrument to keep in your ASB toolkit to put difficult cases on the local agenda and to ensure tenants suffering with ASB feel safe in their community.
For more information contact Jenna Tym in our Housing & Regeneration department via email or phone on 01772 220213. Alternatively send any question through to Forbes Solicitors via our online Contact Form.
Learn more about our Housing & Regeneration department here