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What is anti-social behaviour?

Anti-social behaviour (ASB) can cover a wide range of activities and situations.

These range from writing graffiti, persons hanging around in gangs causing obstructions, holding noisy parties, and vandalism, through to intimidation and other criminal behaviour. It can also be harassment of a person because of their:

  • Sexuality
  • Physical disability
  • Learning disability
  • Ethnicity

Anti-social behaviour is not necessarily the same as a neighbour dispute, although these can sometimes escalate to ASB. It is sometimes referred to as 'sub-criminal' behaviour. This means acts which may not be directly illegal, and therefore a straightforward police issue, but which are more than just different attitudes and standards such as are always going to be present in mixed communities.

While ASB is often thought of as problem caused by young people, this is not always the case. Tackling it is clearly seen to be a priority by many West Lancashire residents. In the last DETER national survey of English housing, 40% of all households reported vandalism and hooliganism as a problem.

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