YOUR AM WRITES: Lynne Neagle AM, Torfaen

South Wales Argus: YOUR AM WRITES: Lynne Neagle, Torfaen AM YOUR AM WRITES: Lynne Neagle, Torfaen AM

NEWSPAPERS and television reports are often full of stories of socalled ‘neighbours from hell’ – the kind of families and individuals whose behaviour blights the lives of those around them and can damage entire communities.

So it probably won’t surprise Argus readers that I’ve dealt with countless cases like this in my 13 years as AM for Torfaen.

In one particularly extreme situation I was involved with last year an entire neighbourhood was held to ransom for months because of the constant noise, criminal and anti-social behaviour caused by a single individual.

I’ll never forget receiving e-mails from a pensioner at five o’clock in the morning telling me that she and the rest of her neighbours had been up all night as a result of anti-social behaviour.

Thankfully the tenant was eventually evicted, and the area has since returned to being the settled and peaceful community it was prior to their arrival; but the residents affected had to put up with many months of stress, misery, and frustration before the situation was finally resolved.

I am always struck by the tremendous strain these situations place on residents, who are often encouraged to record and report every incident – it almost becomes like a full-time job in itself.

We’ve seen various initiatives launched recently to try to get to grips with this problem.

At UK level a ‘trigger’ system is currently being trialled which would ensure police would automatically become involved if more than five households in an area complain about a neighbour, and here in Wales the Welsh Government is consulting on plans to greatly strengthen the powers of social landlords to tackle anti-social behaviour, and is looking at ways to compel landlords in the private sector to do more too.

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This is obviously a really complex issue, and I don’t pretend to have all the answers, but I am really keen to hear the views of Argus readers – particularly those who have, or are, experiencing these kinds of problems within their own communities.

If you are suffering from anti-social behaviour in the community, or you would like assistance with any other matter, please call my office in Pontypool on 01495 740022 or e-mail me at lynne.neagle@wales.gov.uk

You can also reach me through my Facebook page at Facebook.com/lynneneagle

Comments (4)

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10:50am Tue 3 Jul 12

On the inside says...

Private sector landlords must be forced to comply or lose their properties.
Private sector landlords must be forced to comply or lose their properties. On the inside

11:10am Tue 3 Jul 12

Howie' says...

'In one particularly extreme situation I was involved with last year an entire neighbourhood was held to ransom for months because of the constant noise, criminal and anti-social behaviour caused by a single individual. But the residents affected had to put up with many months of stress, misery, and frustration before the situation was finally resolved.
So what did you Lynne Neagle do about it, where were the Police, council & courts. It must be awful for people to live in this situation but what makes it worse are hand wringing local politicians, police who do not recognise a problem or even care about it, councils who claim to be tied by red tape & courts that issue meaningless warnings that often results in the perpetrators remaining in situ for months and sometimes years. How would this wonderful idea of waiting to have five households in an area complain have helped the Mum & her Daughter in Leicester who killed themselves in 2009 after 33 calls to the Police about anti social behavior but the complaints only came from one house. A friend of mine who lives near Bristol has a problem with one of his neighbours but has been told by the Council that none of the other neighbours have complained so they are not prepared to do anything, but as my mate says all the other neighbours are elderly & don't want the hassle with this family & are not affected so badly as they don't live next door to him. The end result is the problem is still there & much hand ringing from local politicians.
'In one particularly extreme situation I was involved with last year an entire neighbourhood was held to ransom for months because of the constant noise, criminal and anti-social behaviour caused by a single individual. But the residents affected had to put up with many months of stress, misery, and frustration before the situation was finally resolved. So what did you Lynne Neagle do about it, where were the Police, council & courts. It must be awful for people to live in this situation but what makes it worse are hand wringing local politicians, police who do not recognise a problem or even care about it, councils who claim to be tied by red tape & courts that issue meaningless warnings that often results in the perpetrators remaining in situ for months and sometimes years. How would this wonderful idea of waiting to have five households in an area complain have helped the Mum & her Daughter in Leicester who killed themselves in 2009 after 33 calls to the Police about anti social behavior but the complaints only came from one house. A friend of mine who lives near Bristol has a problem with one of his neighbours but has been told by the Council that none of the other neighbours have complained so they are not prepared to do anything, but as my mate says all the other neighbours are elderly & don't want the hassle with this family & are not affected so badly as they don't live next door to him. The end result is the problem is still there & much hand ringing from local politicians. Howie'

11:15am Tue 3 Jul 12

Howie' says...

Forgot to say, everyone knows what needs to be done, move them out straight away if they are in social housing or take them to court if they are house owners & jail them if necessary.
Forgot to say, everyone knows what needs to be done, move them out straight away if they are in social housing or take them to court if they are house owners & jail them if necessary. Howie'

2:04pm Tue 3 Jul 12

Cymru Am Beth says...

Totally agree wuth Howie.
Also, lack of discipline, no deterrent. feral children, no adequate punshment.
I could go on.
Totally agree wuth Howie. Also, lack of discipline, no deterrent. feral children, no adequate punshment. I could go on. Cymru Am Beth

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