A new and improved service for people to report antisocial behaviour is being launched in Bolton.
The Be Safe Partnership, which is made up of Bolton Council, Greater Manchester Police and other partner agencies, has reviewed the way it deals with incidents of antisocial behaviour by speaking to those who have experienced it first hand.
Around 2,000 questionnaires were issued earlier this year, asking people their views on the way incidents are reported and the subsequent service they received.
One of the main factors to come out of the consultation was the need for a single point of contact for the duration of the complaint.
As a result, the Be Safe Partnership has pledged that complainants will be given the name of one officer who will update them throughout their case, either by email, telephone or home visit. This could be either a trained antisocial behaviour officer working for Bolton Council or a police officer.
The partnership is also set to re-launch the former It’s Your Call telephone line under the banner of the Antisocial Behaviour Reporting Line where people can report incidents or leave a message if it is out of office hours.
A dedicated website has also been set up so people can report antisocial behaviour online.
Antisocial behaviour officers will respond to messages within three working days. However, in an emergency people should contact 999 for a police response.
The dedicated phone line is for residents who own their home or rent their property from a private landlord.
Tenants of Bolton at Home and housing associations, such as Contour, Great Places and St Vincent’s, should contact their housing provider.
Executive Member for Cleaner, Greener, Safer, Councillor Sufrana Bashir-Ismail, said: “Previously, residents reporting antisocial behaviour may have had to speak to three or four officers during the period of their complaint.
“Having to explain your problem every time you speak to someone can be off-putting and frustrating. However, with the introduction of new service standards, residents will be provided with a single point of contact and a range of support to help them through what can be a difficult and traumatic time.”
Superintendent Nadeem Butt, of GMP, said: “If you are a victim of antisocial behaviour it can have a real, detrimental effect on your quality of life. Tackling this issue is a key priority for us and we know it is important to people living within our communities.
“Antisocial behaviour teams at the council work closely with neighbourhood police officers to investigate reported incidents and put in place suitable solutions where possible. We hope that this improved service will do more to put the victim first, support them and keep them updated on the progress of their complaint, reassuring them that this is an issue that we take extremely seriously.”
The new service will be launched in Victoria Square on Friday, June 25 with information available between 10.30am and 3.30pm.
Bolton at Home will also attend the event to launch a new set of service standards for the way they handle antisocial behaviour incidents.