New Fife-wide team will deal with anti-social problems

A single team will deal with anti-social problems
A single team will deal with anti-social problems

Proposals to create “a more co-ordinated approach to tackling problems of anti-social behaviour” have been approved by Fife Council.

But a number of councillors have questioned whether there’s anything new in this latest policy.

Its aim is to ensure the Council responds quickly to reports of anti-social behaviour and works to promote early intervention and mediation to prevent problems from escalating.

It is also designed to provide better information to the public to make it clear what they should do if they experience anti-social behaviour.

But several members of the Council’s executive committee insisted this should all be in place already.

SNP councillor George Kay (Burntisland, Kinghorn & Western Kirkcaldy) said: “This is something we’ve had over and over and over again.

“It’s not something new. We shouldn’t still be asking questions, we should be coming up with solutions to deal with this.”

And SNP group leader, Councillor Peter Grant (Glenrothes West & Kinglassie) added: “There is nothing here that we shouldn’t be doing already.”

Liberal Democrat group leader, Councillor Tim Brett (Tay Bridgehead) also questioned plans to create a Fife-wide team to tackle anti-social behaviour.

He said: “If I have a problem in north east Fife, I’d expect people there to deal with it.”

Tim Kendrick, partnership and policy manager, told the committee that anti-social behaviour covered a wide number of areas, and impacted on several areas of the Council, and it made sense to work together as part of the single team.

He said: “We’re looking at bringing together staff from a number of existing teams and Council services, including community wardens, housing investigation staff, and the night time noise and environmental enforcement team, to work alongside staff from the Fife Community Safety Partnership within a new safer communities team.”

Mr Kendrick added: “These proposals are quite radical changes to the way the services are managed and delivered.

“The rationale behind the Fife-wide team is to have the ability to mobilise in response to problems in the seven areas.

“We will be able to provide an immediate response. It’s not just about the reponse, but the speed of the response too.”

Further proposals approved by the Council include reviewing responses on a daily basis to ensure that energing problems are addressed and, where possible, nipped in the bud.

And there will be a stronger response to anti-social behaviour in the private rented sector through HMO (House of Multiple Occupation) licensing and private landlord registration.

Councillor Gavin Yates, spokesman for community health and wellbeing, said: “The joint task force is the right way forward.”