Building and enforcing a modern culture of respect and tackling antisocial behaviour is a priority for the Government. On 10 January the Government published the Respect Action Plan. The plan is central to the Government's drive to step up and broaden the clampdown on antisocial behaviour and to promote good behaviour.
Prior to this the Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003 put in place a range of measures to tackle antisocial behaviour and gave local agencies the tools they need to tackle antisocial behaviour on the ground. Key measures in the Act include:
Powers to close premises where drugs are used unlawfully.
Powers enabling social landlords to take action against antisocial tenants.
A package of support and sanctions to enable parents to prevent and tackle antisocial behaviour among children.
Powers to allow police officers to disperse groups of people who are causing nuisance or intimidating others.
Powers for environmental health officers to close noisy premises.
Powers to tackle graffiti and fly-posting.
The Housing Act 2004 also contained important measures to enable landlords to tackle antisocial behaviour. A survey of Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships and Community Safety Partnerships in England and Wales in 2005 found that:
514 crack house closure orders were made between January 2004 and September 2005;
809 areas were designated as dispersal areas between January 2004 and June 2005;
2,369 parenting contracts and orders were made between October 2003 and September 2005;
13,478 acceptable behaviour contracts were made between October 2003 and September 2005.
Antisocial behaviour orders (ASBOs) were introduced under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 and have been available since April 1999. In Dudley 30 ASBOs have been issued between April 1999 and September 2005. 552 ASBOs have been issued in the West Midlands during the same period.