reluctance to include more prevention-focused measures in its antisocial
behaviour strategy will severely damage its effectiveness in the
long-term. The charity is also extremely alarmed that despite widespread
antisocial behaviour still appear to be on the agenda.
Adam Sampson, director of Shelter, said: 'There is a glaring hole in the
government's strategy*. Where are the real solutions that work at
changing, rather than just punishing, antisocial behaviour? Where are
the measures to make sure people don't offend in the first place? Only
when the government is as interested in long-term solutions as it is in
making loud statements to the electorate will antisocial behaviour be a
thing of the past.
Shelter urged the government to introduce more rehabilitative solutions
such as Shelter's Inclusion Project in Rochdale, which has already
shown to be extremely effective in confronting antisocial behaviour.
This kind of innovative service is based around challenging behaviour
and tackling its root causes rather than just punishing people.
The government kept the option open of its plans to dock Housing Benefit
from people found guilty of antisocial behaviour. Earlier this year a
coalition of 31 organisations, including Shelter, demanded that
these controversial plans be scrapped as they cause innumerable problems
and do not solve antisocial behaviour.
Mr Sampson continued: 'These measures, which will only force people
further into poverty and increase homelessness, have absolutely no place
in a strategy supposedly aimed at dealing with antisocial behaviour.'
* see LGCnet.
1. The government proposal to cut Housing Benefit to tenants accused
anti social behaviour was consulted on earlier this year. The deadline
for responses to the prop osal was 12 August 2003. A coalition of over
thirty leading organisations has come out against these proposals to cut
housing benefit to anti social tenants. These include includes Shelter,
the Local Government Association, the Tenants Participation Advisory
Service, the Law Society, and other tenants groups, housing
organisations and charities. In a joint statement they described the
proposal as 'discriminatory, ineffective and ill-conceived'. Copies of
the joint statement and a list of all the organisation signed up contact
Shelter on 020 7505 2162
2. Shelter's Inclusion Project has been developed in partnership with
Rochdale MBC as an innovative way of tackling
antisocial behaviour. It provides support to people who are homeless, or
at risk of homelessness, due to alleged antisocial behaviour, and works
with them to tackle their behaviour and enable them to sustain their
3. Last year a mother and two children were put in touch with the
project after being moved five times as a result of her son's disruptive
behaviour. The Inclusion Project helped her overcome her drink problem
and showed her and her son how to confront his behaviour. She has now
not drunk alcohol since December and her son is no longer causing