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Vocapedia > UK > Violence > Antisocial behaviour









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antisocial behaviour

antisocial behaviour injunctions > Gangbos


swearing, spitting and neglectful parenting

petty crime


neighbours from hell / problem families / violence-prone families

"intensive care sin bins"

nuisance neighbours

bad neighbours

badly behaved families

drunken street violence

crackdown on drunken violence



yob culture



'problem' families


drunk louts

drink-fuelled rioting

binge drinkers

street brawl



Anti-social behaviour orders        ASBOs

petty hooliganism and loutishness

disorder crackdown


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self-harm    March 2009










Sin bins scheme

for 1,500 antisocial families a year

Major expansion for plan to tackle bad neighbours
Units will provide round the clock supervision


Thursday April 12, 2007
Alan Travis, home affairs editor

More than 1,500 families a year, dubbed neighbours from hell, are to be placed in "intensive care sin bins" under a big expansion announced yesterday of the government's family intervention programme.

The 15m scheme is designed to tackle the most badly behaved families in England by moving them into dedicated residential units with round the clock supervision by social care workers, providing support, parenting advice and counselling.

There is no legal compulsion on the problem families to live in the specialist units but those that do can avoid permanent eviction from council housing, prosecution for antisocial behaviour, or their children being taken into care.

Many disruptive families in the programme also face curfews and bans on late-night visitors, and will get drug and alcohol treatment as well as money and parenting advice as part of the attempt to tackle the specific causes in each case.

The family intervention programme is modelled on the Dundee Family Project, started 10 years ago by the local council's social work and housing departments and NCH Action for Children Scotland.

There are currently 572 problem families, targeted by 38 projects. The extra 15m will fund a two-year expansion, with a further 1,000 project workers trained to deliver parenting programmes and intensive support.

Louise Casey, the "respect tsar" responsible for coordinating the antisocial behaviour programme, said yesterday that the number of family intervention projects working with the most difficult families was being expanded to 53, dealing with 1,500 problem families a year: "This minority of feckless and disruptive families can cause untold misery to those who have to live alongside them and destroy entire neighbourhoods with their frightening and disruptive behaviour.

"These projects, a flagship part of the respect programme, grip families and use enforcement action and intensive help, and are proven to turn families around. These are families that in the past may have been written off by agencies as lost causes - but now they will be offered the right help and incentives to become decent members of their community and give their children the opportunity to grow up with a chance in life."

Research published yesterday by Sheffield Hallam University, focusing on 256 problem families who had been referred to the projects after being threatened with eviction or homelessness, showed that in 85% of cases their behaviour had been changed.

The main types of antisocial behaviour involved were youth nuisance [70%], general neighbour conflicts [54%] and property damage [43%]. More than 60% of the families had three or more children.

Poor mental health and/or drug and alcohol misuse affected 80% of adults involved and more than half involved cases of intimate partner violence or intergenerational violence within the family. The research showed that nearly 40% were at high or medium risk of having their children taken into care.

The projects typically involve three levels of intervention: "sin bins", managed council housing blocks of several problem families with 24-hour on-site supervision; a middle tier where families are managed but dispersed in the community; and the lowest tier, providing support in their own homes to antisocial families threatened with eviction.




At a glance: Family intervention


The projects are officially described as "difficult schemes to run and hard to get right but can pay enormous dividends". They are designed to turn around the behaviour of families and reduce their impact on their community.

The role of the key worker is to "grip" the family's problems using support and sanctions to motivate them.

A contract is drawn up between the family and key worker which sets out the changes expected, the support that will be provided, and the consequences if changes are not made.

Sanctions are important and include the threat of demoting a tenancy or gaining a suspended possession order linked to compliance with the project. For some, the prospect of children being taken into care breaks the feeling that they are untouchable.

Practical projects such as teaching parents how to get children up and fed, clearing up, preparing meals and bedtime routines are used to provide structure to chaotic lives.

Costs: average costs range from 8,000 per family to provide support in their own home or a managed property to 15,000 for intensive support in a residential unit. Supporters claim these cost must be set against the costs of damage to society of a "neighbours from hell" family of 250,000 a year.

Sin bins scheme for 1,500 antisocial families a year,
G, 12.4.2007,










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