We asked one of our case studies (case study No 2) to comment on the BBC’s recent report about the Victims Commissioner, Baroness Newlove and her findings on Anti-Social Behaviour which we welcome today.
Case Study 2 said “As a victim of Low level Anti-Social behaviour I get completely what Baroness Newlove is saying in her report. When I found out just how difficult it was to get a response from public services I decided to test all of them and keep the correspondence as evidence. I also studied high profile cases such as that of the late Fiona Pilkington who spectacularly brought anti social behaviour to the attention of the world in 2007 by killing herself and her daughter out of desperation at their unmitigated treatment by yobs in the neighborhood.
While racking my brains how to get a nightmare neighbour off my back I had to really work hard to study how I had become a victim. I became an expert by experience, enduring over a hundred incidents where I concluded that I physically had to confront the perpetrator myself in order to get “the agencies” referred to in the baroness’ report to respond. The police wasted countless hours sending two person patrols to cover these incidents and each time explained there was nothing they could do. I reported diligently to the police the multiple instances of outrageous insulting behaviour by a deranged and sadistic neighbour who was responsible for turning my back yard into a battle ground, and our neighborhood into a place of fear for my family, and inciting others against us. I tried to engage the community safety unit at Gravesham Council – eventually attempting to invoke the community trigger without success. I bear mental scars from the torment of this nightmare neighbour and he cost me approximately £200K in lost opportunities and devalued my home. When he went to court for assault he received a conditional discharge, but it was clear to me he had been stalking and harassing me for over twenty five years. No matter how I put this to the police they were incapable of taking it in. The CPS refused to acknowledge this and left me to complain to the police. Guess what? the Police investigating were the same police who I was complaining about”.
Here at Toxic Lives we agree, Britain is a lawless state which has de-skilled its public services. These now operate behind a rosy fascade of loveliness, gripped in a culture of denial – supported by the BBC and Press. (The BBC Reports today that the Local Government Association said its members do their best). We found that the Ombudsman is part of a complaint system which repeatedly states its case by shrugging its shoulders on behalf of the “services” instead of turning genuine complaints into service improvements.
None of this is acceptable of course, and for the Police Sergeant and Inspector who told Case Study No 2 that it wasn’t in the public interest to prosecute his nightmare neighbour the first time he was assaulted – but they work diligently to support people as a result of Fiona Pilkington – shame on you.
The police and their political masters need to get real. Our police and council workers need support and independent monitoring to do their job so they can stop all levels of crime.
We look to the police and not private agencies to achieve this, but of course you can now buy the type of support needed to beat this – if you have the money. Lets hope the commissioner is given the teeth to make some really biting social change for ordinary people who are being killed by sadistic, psychopathic, criminal neighbours while being ignored by community safety teams.
Stuart Dixon FRSA
Source: Anti-social behaviour ‘nightmare’ ignored, says report – BBC News
Many of us have had similar experiences and its not only councils who are inadequate, but housing associations as well. The bottom line is this they are afraid that should the case fail in court, they will be counter sued and would have to pay the court costs etc etc. This is what I was told when I complained to the housing assocaition as to why they had not taken action after repeated offcences against us. Let s face it , they are in the money making business and if anything interferts with that their cop out is to move you and not the offender.
In my experience under resourced people perform badly. With such big cuts in council staff and policing and outsourcing to housing associations – without people in the council who can manage the contracts and bring up standards, how can a housing association be expected to deliver a service people can be happy with and feel safe? Instead councils and housing trusts would rather put gagging clauses in tenancy agreements so you don’t go to the press when they can’t protect you, and don’t respond when you call for help. In space they can’t hear you scream.
Well if you look at how the housing associations / councils have got time to hold charity events at the office throughtout the year, then its certainly not a lack of money. Yes, at one stage we were “forced” to sign an asb agreement even though we were the complainants. Both us and the neighbour next door refused to sign it