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  • Author or Editor: Helen Easton x
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Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) have become the main sanction for dealing with anti-social behaviour in the UK. This book provides one of the first assessments of this sanction, which has become widely used but remains extremely controversial.

The report is based on detailed interviews with ASBO recipients, practitioners and community representatives in areas affected by anti-social behaviour. Examining its use and impact from these various perspectives, the book assesses the effects of ASBOs on the behaviour and attitudes of recipients as well as examining the various issues which arise in relation to their implementation.

The report should be read by academics and students who want to make sense of ASBOs, practitioners who are involved in implementing them as well as policy makers who are responsible for designing this sanction. It will also be of interest to all those who have an interest in addressing the issue of anti-social behaviour.

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This book summarises the findings of a study that explored Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) in the United Kingdom and the views and experiences of the three key parties involved — the agencies, the offenders and the victims. It looks at the implementation of ASBOs and their impact on the different types of offenders. It examines the role of the agencies involved in processing and issuing ASBOs; the impact on those given ASBOs, particularly in relation to their propensity to engage in anti-social and criminal behaviour; and the experience and concerns of victims, complainants and affected communities. The research was conducted in seven London boroughs, and one location in the Midlands. Twenty-nine interviews were conducted with practitioners, including police, anti-social behaviour officers, community safety officers, housing officers, Youth Offending Team members, probation officers and magistrates.

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This chapter summarises the findings of the research which explored the operation, views and experiences of the relevant agencies in selecting and processing cases of Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) in the United Kingdom. It analyses both the conceptual and practical issues that have arisen in different locations and in different agencies. The findings are discussed under the following headings: variations in attitudes and experience in different boroughs; interagency partnership and cooperation; criteria for selecting and processing cases; the problem of definition; the shift from ASBOs to Anti-Social Behaviour Orders on Conviction; formulating the conditions for ASBOs; the provision of support and welfare services; the use of ASBOs in relation to Acceptable Behaviour Contracts and Parenting Orders; and breaches and enforcement.

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This chapter summarises the findings of the research which assessed the impact of Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) on a range of offenders in the United Kingdom, particularly in relation to their propensity to engage in anti-social behaviour and future offending. The frequency with which orders were breached was also investigated, as well as the impact of the order on the offender’s personal life, including their personal and family relationships. This chapter draws on information gathered from the 38 completed cases and the 28 additional offender interviews that were undertaken. It discusses the findings under the following topics: offending histories; social, personal and psychological histories; attitudes towards being given an ASBO; responses to the conditions of the order; impact of ASBOs on offenders; geographic and functional displacement; number and type of breaches; and impact on personal, social and family life.

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In order to find out how different community groups and victims in the United Kingdom felt about the effectiveness of Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs), seven focus groups were conducted in communities that had been affected by high levels of anti-social behaviour (ASB) and where ASBOs had been used. One of the focus groups was not directly related to specific ASBO cases, but was included in the survey to provide some insight into the attitudes of residents towards ASBOs in locations not directly affected by ASB. Fourteen in-depth interviews with victims and complainants were also carried out. Each victim interview directly corresponds to one or more of the 38 ASBO cases. This chapter summarises the findings, focusing on community expectations and changing levels of tolerance; problems with evidence, intimidation and enforcement; issues of displacement; concern for the vulnerable and marginalised; and competing priorities.

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This has been an exploratory study of Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) in the United Kingdom based on a selective sample of offenders, agencies, victims and residents. It became evident in the course of the research that these different groups tended to employ different criteria of ‘success’ in relation to the use of ASBOs. Assessments of success tended to be made on a number of dimensions: bringing relief to certain neighbourhoods and groups; reducing the level and impact of anti-social behaviour (ASB); changing attitudes and motivation of offenders; level of breaches and their enforcement; reduction of different forms of ASB in the area.

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