Council tenants: Anti-social behaviour
Neighbour disputes and mediation
The most common type of anti social behaviour (ASB) complaints we deal with are for noise. This, amongst other types of ASB, can sometimes escalate into a dispute with neighbours. It is important to be tolerant of other people’s lifestyle and think about how behaviour can affect other people. For example, especially for those living in blocks of flats, a certain level of day to day noise is reasonable.
What you can do
Where possible, before making a formal complaint, try to resolve the issue by talking to your neighbour and trying to understand each other’s point of view. Think about what you are going to say and have a clear, simple message in mind before speaking to them. Be friendly and stay calm. Don’t get involved in an argument and if your neighbour is unreasonable, walk away.
If you don’t feel able to speak to your neighbour consider writing a polite note to them explaining the problem and how this has affected you. It would be useful to include what you feel a reasonable compromise could be to resolve the problem.
Report the problem and seek advice at an early stage from your estate manager or your managing agent. If things don't improve your estate manager or managing agent may take action or organise a coordinated approach by all those concerned.
You may be advised you to:
- keep a diary of events recorded using a diary sheet
- take photographs (for example, dumped rubbish, vandalism)
Other help available
If you witness a crime you should contact the police on 999.
Mediation involves resolving a problem with a neighbour by talking it through with a trained mediator.
Mediation meetings are conducted with an agreed set of rules that give both sides a chance to have their say without interruption. The rules do not allow any insults, aggressive behaviour or threats.
By the end of the mediation you should be in a position to make an agreement about how to deal with problems in the future. Mediation sessions are strictly confidential.
Court action and witnesses
Most complaints of ASB are resolved with informal action. However, where the case is more serious legal action may be taken. In these cases we can offer support and protection if you act as a witness in legal proceedings. This can vary from providing transport to and from court, to making adaptations to improve the security of your home. We offer support and information on being a witness in all cases and will liaise closely with the police to ensure that all witnesses feel safe.
Housing transfer for council tenants at risk
In serious cases of ASB, where there is a risk to your safety as a result of acting as a witness you can make an application to transfer to alternative housing. Your estate manager will help you complete the application forms. The area housing manager will consider the application and if it is approved you should receive an offer of suitable alternative housing within 8 weeks of the application.
Existing tenants facing an immediate risk will be granted priority rehousing status.
For more information see the allocation scheme.
Victim Support in Wandsworth
For help and support, call your local victim care team on 0845 450 3936.
(Open Monday to Friday, 8am-8pm and Saturday 9am-5pm)
Outside of these hours call the victim Supportline on 0808 16 89 111
(Open weeknights 8pm to 8am, weekends Saturday 5pm to Monday 8am.)
For more information visit www.victimsupport.org.uk