by Steve Beasant on 6 August, 2013
East Marsh Ward Councillor slammed North East Lincolnshire Council for “failing” to deal with nuisance complaints – and palming the problem off to the police.
According to the Grimsby Telegraph the Ward that Councillor Steve Beasant represents, the East Marsh is a hotspot for nuisance, responsible for nearly one-in-five reports in North East Lincolnshire made to Community Pride, over the two years starting April 2011 and ending May 2013.
Local residents regularly report issues such as fly-tipping, waste in gardens, alarms going off and loud music.
Councillor Steve Beasant, (Lib, East Marsh) believes that people in his ward are now losing faith in Community Pride, which is tasked with dealing with those complaints.
It is funded by North East Lincolnshire Council (NELC) – but had its budget slashed from £1,517,087 to £923,750 in 2012.
The number of already stretched staff – who dealt with more than 3,000 complaints across 15 wards between April 2011 and May 2012 – dropped from 40 to 36 in the 2012-2013 financial year.
The complaints also dropped from 3,109 in 2011-2012 to 2,981 the following year – which Mr Beasant believes is a sign that people have stopped reporting them and now go directly to the police.
Mr Beasant said: “Nuisance complaints are the council’s responsibility – and we are failing on it.
“People tell me that they ring up time and time again but staff are so stretched that they do not get a direct answer – so they put the phone down.
“Their only other option is the police, so they ring up and report it as anti-social behaviour – which just creates more work for them.”
At a recent East Marsh Involve meeting, PCSOs reported that they had received 69 complaints of anti-social behaviour in the ward between June 26 andd July 27 – and 19 were about noise.
If they continued at that rate for a year, the police would receive more than the 183 that were logged by Community Pride in 2012-2013 – up 40 on the previous year.
John Willis, East Marsh neighbourhood co-ordinator for Humberside Police, said: “More than 25 per cent of anti-social behaviour reports in that month were for noise – and that is about the average.
“People pick up the phone to call Community Pride and when they are unable to contact them, they call the police.”
But both Mr Beasant and Mr Willis believe the public should work with both Community Pride and the police to stamp out problems in the area – at a time when public spending is tight.
He added: “Even if there is no direct action, I still encourage residents to log a call because that information can be used by the police or the council to identify and solve a problem.
Mr Willis added: “There may not be an immediate response but information from you will be logged on to a database which fuels and feeds action when we are in a position to take it.”
Contact Community Pride about nuisance complaints on 01472 325823 and Humberside Police on the non-emergency number of 101.
Steve also added after the East Marsh Involve meeting: “You have seen tonight there is clear evidence that we have not thought through the impact of the cuts to Community Pride – we are now overloading the Humberside Police with extra work. Clearly they should not be attending problems relating to noise but 19 out of 69 complaints relating to ASB were due to noise – almost a third.”Leave a comment