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Glasgow City Council

A day in the life

Day in the life of a Community Relations Officer

9am: Call to the Sheriff Court regarding a case 

I start my day by calling the Sheriff Court. One of my cases involves a person charged with a drug offence, which may result in a prison sentence. The court confirms that he received a 27-month custodial sentence. I let the relevant housing association know and start to pull together a file for the housing association's solicitor to initiate legal action to evict the tenant.

10am: Call from a witness about a loud party the night before

I receive a complaint of a noisy party. I take a detailed statement from the witness - when the party started and stopped, when they phoned the police, the incident number and ask if any other neighbours have been affected and can corroborated the incident. I then send a letter to the neighbour who held the party to arrange a meeting to discuss the complaint and consider issuing them with a formal warning.

11am: Interview a victim for a new case 

I've received a referral about a woman who is having antisocial behaviour problems with one of her neighbours. I go out to visit her and she tells me more about the problems she is having; these include banging, a loud TV and threatening looks from her neighbour. I suggest mediation to resolve the issue, she agrees to try the mediation process and so I refer the case on to my colleagues in the Mediation Service.

2pm: Acceptable Behaviour Contract 

I've arranged a case conference with Social Work and Community Police to progress an Acceptable Behaviour Contract (ABC). An ABC is a written agreement between a person who has been involved in antisocial behaviour and local agencies whose role it is to prevent such behaviour. It's a non-legally binding document that is monitored for six months from the point of signing.

The case involves an individual who lives in a high rise block of newly refurbished flats. He invites his friends round for drinks and parties and it often become disorderly. He has issues with alcohol and is engaging with support services.

We discuss and agree the following points to be included in the ABC:

  • I will ensure that neither I, nor my visitors to my home, cause disturbances i.e. fighting/shouting/banging within my home
  • I will not play music at excessive volume within my home or allow others to do so
  • I accept that I am responsible for all those who visit my home and if I, or my visitors, engage in antisocial behaviour my tenancy may be at risk

Everyone in attendance signs the ABC and a copy will be held by the perpetrator, CRU, Police Scotland and Social Work Services.

3.30pm: Legal Meeting 

I had pre-arranged a time to meet with legal services and the relevant senior manager to go through a case file, before preparing a court writ for an Antisocial Behaviour Order (ASBO). I confirm that all witnesses are willing to attend court and confirm contact details. We check that the relevant support measures have been offered and confirm a letter of consultation from Police Scotland. The Glasgow City Council Lawyer then starts to prepare the ASBO for court action.

4.30pm: Home Visit 

I visit a young person who has picked up antisocial behaviour related charges with a Community Police Officer in that area. I speak to the young person and their parents and explain to them who CRU are and the role they play in tackling antisocial behaviour across the city. I also advise them of the impact their behaviour may have on the local community, whether they have support needs or if we can help with diversionary activities, and possible consequences should their behaviour continue (e.g. ASBOs and evictions). At this point, I have their attention and the young person's parents start apologising and promise that it will never happen again.

7pm: Call Out - Professional Witness service 

This evening I'm on the rota for the Out of Hours Standby Service to provide a professional witness service. I receive a call from a complainer reporting loud music and voices heard from the property below. It's an ongoing case and so I consult with the Risk Assessment my colleague has prepared and note that an Anti-Social Behaviour Order (ASBO) has been issued against the alleged perpetrator. I travel to the property with a colleague and call the complainer to let them know we have arrived; they give us access to the property.

8pm: Breach of ASBO witnessed 

Through the course of the call out, loud male voices can be heard shouting things like "Look at the time, its *!*!*!* Friday night!" and "Here we, here we, here we *!*!*! go!". We can also hear loud music. At this stage, I call Police Scotland on 999 to report an ongoing breach of ASBO. My colleague and I provide statements to the Police Officers and they confirm the details of the ASBO. Ten minutes later, four police officers leave the property with the perpetrator in handcuffs and put him into the back of the police van. He will be held for a court appearance charged with breach of ASBO, which can result in a six-month prison term and/or a £5,000 fine on summary conviction.

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