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Flytipped rubbish on the street

Anti-social behaviour

Anti-social behaviour (ASB) covers a wide range of behaviours that can have a negative effect on people by causing nuisance, annoyance, harassment, alarm or distress. It can be caused by a Cottsway customer or someone living with or visiting them.

We are committed to resolving anti-social behaviour quickly and fairly. We take all complaints seriously and you can speak to us in confidence if you wish.

Anti-social behaviour or criminality can lead to eviction. In 2020 we obtained two evictions and seven injunctions against customers who caused undue distress to their neighbours or local community, for things like drug use and dealing, extreme noise nuisance and abusive behaviour.

If you are in immediate danger, phone the police on 999.

  • Consider your neighbours
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    You should treat your neighbours with the respect and consideration you’d like to be treated with. For example, give them advance notice if you’re going to be doing DIY, holding a party or making a lot of noise.

    All our customers are expected to behave respectfully under the terms of their tenancies or lease agreements.

  • Is it anti-social behaviour or not?
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    Although sometimes inconvenient, the following are not automatically considered anti-social behaviour:

    • A one-off party
    • Cats in the garden
    • Children crying or playing
    • Cooking odours
    • Dirty looks or rude gestures
    • Disputes on social media
    • Dog roaming and fouling
    • General household living noise at reasonable hours
    • Gossiping in the street
    • Inconsiderate parking on a public highway
    • Lifestyle clash

    Use our ASB toolkit below to help you find out what is and is not considered anti-social behaviour, and what steps you need to take next.

  • Dealing with anti-social behaviour
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    Depending on the type of antisocial behaviour you’re experiencing, there are different steps you should take.

    Talk to the person involved (if it is safe to do so)

    If you know who is causing the problem and you feel safe to do so, talk to them.  Explain how their activities or behaviour is affecting you. Often issues can be down to a simple misunderstanding which can be resolved through talking. However, if this is not possible you can report issues to us, and we will investigate. 

    For help and advice on dealing with your neighbour see: Resolve’s guidance information

    Keep an incident record

    When you contact us, you will be asked for information about the anti-social behaviour. You can use our incident diary to keep a record of everything that happens. This will help us to deal with your concerns. 

    Please include details of the incident(s) when it occurs, providing as much detail of as possible. Keeping the diary up to date helps us work out what we can do to help resolve the matter. Once you’ve completed the diary for two weeks, please scan or photograph your diary and send it back to us.

    Record noise disturbances

    To help us investigate complaints about noise and anti-social behaviour you can record noise disturbances on the Noise App and send us the recordings to support your complaint.

    Download the Noise App:

  • Reporting anti-social behaviour
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    If you have tried but are unable to resolve an issue yourself, you can report your concerns to us so we can investigate. We may ask you for more details if necessary.

    Please note: Although you may make reports of ASB anonymously, sometimes this can limit the actions we can take. We will not disclose your identity if you do not want us to. However, sometimes the nature of the complaint may make identification possible.

    You may also need to report the incident and pass on reference numbers to us. This may include: 

    • Your local council if the incident involves environmental issues such as animals, pest control, noise, fly-tipping or hazardous materials.
    • The police if the incident is of a serious or criminal nature.
  • How we deal with anti-social behaviour reports
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    How we deal with your report will be discussed with you so that you are comfortable with the action we take. Regular updates will be provided throughout our investigation.

    Typically, we will:

    • Acknowledge your report and give you a unique reference number.
    • Discuss the issues with you and agree an action plan of what we can/will do.
    • Give you timeframes within which you can expect us to respond.
    • Regularly update you on the progress of your case.
    • Always contact you before we close your case.

    For further information on how we deal with anti-social behaviour:

  • Mediation
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    In some cases, voluntary mediation might help to resolve your problem. It is an informal, confidential and independent service available to help neighbours sort out their differences and reach an agreement. They can help you and your neighbour(s) understand each other’s point of view and reach a solution.  Please ask and we will refer you. 

ASB toolkit

Noise
  • Noise
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    Anti-social behaviour is:

    • Persistent or night-time loud noise / music
    • Persistent dog barking (but if you concerned for an animal’s welfare, then please let us know or contact the RSPCA)

    Persistent noise is that lasting longer than 30 minutes a day for at least 5 days within one week.

    Night time noise is between 11pm and 7am.

    If the behaviour has been ongoing, please:

    • Record noise disturbances and/or
    • Log dates and times of occurrences on our incident diary.
    • Send these to us, either by post or via our online form.

    See ‘Dealing with anti-social behaviour’ above.

    Hearing the following is not considered anti-social behaviour:

    • Children playing / crying (but if you are concerned for a child's welfare then please let us or social services know)
    • Footsteps
    • General living sounds such as DIY, the washing machine or vacuuming during the day
    • Neighbours arguing / shouting (but if you are concerned for someone’s safety see: Abuse and neglect)
Untidy garden
Dogs
  • Dogs
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    The following are considered a tenancy breach rather than anti-social behaviour:

    • Occasional barking
    • If a dog is let off its lead and unattended by owner
    • If dog foul is not picked up by owner

    To report a tenancy breach please: contact us

    If your concerned for an animal’s welfare, then please let us know or contact the RSPCA

    If a dog has bitten someone, please report this to the police immediately. Then tell us the incident report number and the officer’s name so we can make contact and work with them, and you, to agree the next steps.

     

Cars
  • Cars
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    If there are issues with a vehicle(s) we will consider:

    • Where it is parked – in a public area or Cottsway-owned land
    • If it has valid tax, MOT and insurance
    • Whether it is in a dangerous state of disrepair
    • Whether any car repairs or maintenance occurring is beyond normal domestic work.

    If a vehicle has been abandoned on Cottsway-owned land, we will start the process to remove it within five working days of it being reported to us.

Fly-tipping, vandalism & graffiti
  • Fly-tipping, vandalism & graffiti
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    It will depend on where this has occurred as to who is responsible for clearing the issue:

    • Cottsway-owned land: Please complete our online form with location details, including a photo if possible, or call 01993 890000.
    • Public land: Contact your local council so they can arrange removal.
    • Private land: This will be the responsibility of the private land owner, not Cottsway. 

    If the incident has taken place on Cottsway-owned land, we will:

    • Remove fly-tipping containing dangerous items within 24 hours and all other fly-tipping within five working days.
    • Remove offensive graffiti within 24 hours of it being reported.
Drunk or rowdy behaviour
  • Drunk or rowdy behaviour
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    If the associated behaviour is of a criminal nature you need to report this to the police immediately, you must also let them know if you are concerned about your safety.

    Once you have reported it to the police, please let us know the incident report number and the officer’s name so we can make contact and work with them, and you, to agree the next steps.

    If the behaviour has been ongoing, please:

    See ‘Dealing with anti-social behaviour’ above.

Drugs
  • Drugs
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    Drug use, dealing and cultivation is a criminal offence and you need to report this to the police immediately.

    You must also let them know if you are concerned for your safety.

    Once you have reported it to the police, please let us know the incident report number and the officer’s name so we can make contact and work with them, and you, to agree the next steps.

    If any drug related paraphernalia such as pills, syringes and needles are found on our property/land, we will remove them immediately.

    If the behaviour has been ongoing, please:

    See ‘Dealing with anti-social behaviour’ above.

Harassment & abuse
  • Harassment & abuse
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    If the associated behaviour is of a criminal nature you need to report this to the police immediately, you must also let them know if you are concerned about your safety.

    Once you have reported it to the police, please let us know the incident report number and the officer’s name so we can make contact and work with them, and you, to agree the next steps.

    If the behaviour has been ongoing, please:

    See ‘Dealing with anti-social behaviour’ above.

    Other support

Hate crime & racism
  • Hate crime & racism
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    This is a criminal offence and you need to report this to the police immediately.

    You must also let them know if you are concerned for your safety.

    Once you have reported it to the police, please let us know the incident report number and the officer’s name so we can make contact and work with them, and you, to agree the next steps.

    You can report it via our online form or to prevent delays, please call 01993 890000

    Other support

Assault, arson, knife crime
  • Assault, arson, knife crime
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    This is a criminal offence and you need to report this to the police immediately.

    You must also let them know if you are concerned for your safety.

    Once you have reported it to the police, please let us know the incident report number and the officer’s name so we can make contact and work with them, and you, to agree the next steps.

    You can report it via our online form or to prevent delays, please call 01993 89000.

Anti-social behaviour service review
Our Scrutiny Group reviewed our approach to ASB in autumn 2020.

Find out more and read their report.

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