wdh

News

‘Margaret’s Story’ - ASB awareness week

Published 22 July 2021

 

WDH never underestimates the harm antisocial (ASB) or nuisance behaviour can cause and how simple every day activities such as going to the shops or visiting family who may live nearby can become very difficult - especially if people are fearful of intimidation or targeted behaviour from others.

 

Here is ‘Margaret’s story’.

She first reported being the victim of ASB to WDH in 2018 and suffered due to a neighbour across the road acting aggressively and in an intimidating manner towards her.

 

Margaret said: “At first it was just name calling and shouting out at me when I went to the local shop or when I was on the school run. I still don’t know why it all started but over a number of weeks her behaviour got worse and her other family members began to do the same.”

“I was scared of reporting her to WDH because I didn’t want to make the situation worse and cause more problems for my family.”

She added: “I was scared of reporting her to WDH because I didn’t want to make the situation worse and cause more problems for my family. In the end though it got too much so I rang OneCALL to report all that was happening to me. The person I spoke with was really nice and noted everything I had to say. She confirmed that a report had been logged and that a WDH officer would call and see me over the next couple of days.”

A Community Safety Officer visited Margaret’s home regularly to make sure she was okay, and she was receiving the help she needed. 

“I really appreciated these calls because I felt more reassured and knew the officer cared about my problem.”

“She was very supportive and took more details from me as well as leaving diary sheets with me so that I could note down all the different dates and times the neighbour caused problems. They also kept in touch with me every week to ask how I was getting on. I really appreciated these calls because I felt more reassured and knew the officer cared about my problem.”

The situation grew worse with shouting and name calling progressing to people going into Margaret’s garden and banging on her windows late at night, which frightened her. Margaret also reported this to the Police and was informed that both them and WDH regularly discussed her case.

She explains another of her experiences: “On one night, the Police arrested a member of my neighbour’s family for harassing me and I also had another neighbour who called and said she wanted to support me because it wasn’t right what I was experiencing. It was at this point that the WDH officer told me about injunctions and how they felt there was now enough evidence available to apply for one.”

Margaret added: “I gave the Community Safety team a full statement of my experiences which I was told was being submitted to the court along with information from the Police. At first, I wasn’t needed at court because I was told that WDH were wanting to seek a temporary injunction at short notice, but the officer always kept me informed.”

“The officer talked me through the whole process and even met me at court a few days before to show me around.”

“A few weeks later I did have to attend and give evidence to try and help secure a longer-term injunction and the thought of this was very scary. However, the officer talked me through the whole process and even met me at court a few days before to show me around as I had never been before.

The court date finally came, and I was asked questions by the judge which I answered as carefully as I could. We won the case which was great news, and the judge ordered my neighbour to have a two year injunction which prevented her from harassing me any further.”

"I am really thankful for all the help WDH gave me and for supporting me through the whole process."

“Since then, life is still sometimes uncomfortable, but the neighbour and her family mainly leave me alone now. I am really thankful for all the help WDH gave me and for supporting me through the whole process.  It felt great to go for a pint of milk or pick my daughter up from school again without having to look over my shoulder.”

 

Ensuring that tenants and residents feel safe in their homes and neighbourhoods is a priority for WDH and the Community Safety Team. Working closely with our partner agencies such as the Police and local authorities to help tackle antisocial behaviour and crime is a very important part of our work in creating confident communities. Please visit our community safety page  which gives you advice and guidance on how to report anti-social behaviour and who to contact.

 

 

Back to top