Anti-social behaviour is a nightmare for two in three people in South Yorkshire

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ANTO-SOCIAL behaviour is a ‘big problem’ for two thirds of South Yorkshire residents who reported incidents to police.

Almost half of people who rang the police about anti-social behaviour were not satisfied with the way the problem is being dealt with.

And one third felt there is more anti-social behaviour now than a year ago, the report by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary found.

Inspectors are also ‘concerned’ that the force IT system does not adequately identify callers who are most at risk of harm, such as repeat victims and vulnerable people.

“There is a relatively high level of anti-social behaviour recorded by police in South Yorkshire in comparison with the rest of England and Wales,” inspectors said.

Today South Yorkshire Police insisted the problem is reducing.

Chief Inspector Colin McFarlane said 13,500 incidents were recorded in the county in April and May this year, compared with 19,500 in the same period last Year. Within South Yorkshire anti-social behaviour is falling, he said.

“It is a force priority for South Yorkshire Police this year and beyond.”

The report - a snapshot of the county - was based on interviews with 200 residents who contacted police during last September about anti-social behaviour.

It found while 54 per cent of people were satisfied with the police’s response, and 62 per cent were pleased with the way their incident was dealt with, two thirds, or 65 per cent, said anti-social behaviour was a ‘big problem’ to them.

Christine Roberts, secretary of Monteney and Ecclesfield Tenants’ and Residents’ Association which covers Parson Cross, agreed.

“One resident told me she’d rung the police about anti-social behaviour and it had taken them four hours to respond - that’s no good is it?” she said.

“But it’s not something you can just lay at the police’s door. It’s the council as well.”

The report - A Step in the Right Direction: The Policing of Anti-Social Behaviour - found the force has made progress since 2010 ‘in the way it understands and tackles’ the issue.

South Yorkshire Police had improved work with partners including councils and had used social media to promote successes.

Chf Insp McFarlane said: “The report has allowed us to look at some issues along with our partners so we can offer an even better service. The report acknowledges many of the good things we are doing to tackle anti-social behaviour.

“We have seen improvements since 2010.”