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New plans for anti-social behaviour
Home Secretary Theresa May is seeking to give communities and residents the power to make the police take action over anti-social behaviour
A new community trigger to force police to investigate repeated complaints will make it quicker and easier to stop anti-social behaviour blighting the lives of communities, the Home Secretary has said.
Theresa May said she wanted to stop repeat victims suffering unnoticed by giving communities and residents the power to make the police take action.
Forces will be required to investigate any incident reported by at least five people, or any three separate complaints by the same person.
Speaking after meeting residents in Hulme, Manchester, she said the measures in the white paper "will give people the confidence that when they call the police something will be done".
"I want to see the police dealing with anti-social behaviour when it happens and when people are reporting it," she said. But victims were saying that time and time again nothing was happening, she added.
The new powers, which will be trialled in three areas, "will enable residents to say that the point has come where the police are required to do something", Mrs May said.
As the Home Secretary ends Labour's anti-social behaviour orders (Asbos), which have been described as a badge of honour among anti-social youths by critics, Mrs May will bring in streamlined measures designed to ensure police take incidents of low-level nuisance seriously.
Mrs May's reforms will replace 19 measures with six powers that target people, places and police powers.
A new Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) will be used to ban an individual from particular activities or places and civil Crime Prevention Injunctions (CPI) will be brought in to give agencies an immediate power to protect victims and communities by stopping bad behaviour before it escalates. The lower standard of proof for civil orders such as the CPI means they can be put in place in days or even hours.
Simpler powers to close premises that are a magnet for trouble and tougher action over nightmare neighbours, with faster eviction processes for those who refuse to change their ways, will also be introduced.