A dispersal order has been granted by Amber Valley Borough Council to give uniformed police, including PCSOs, the power to ask groups of two or more people who are causing a nuisance to move on.
Once individuals have been asked to leave they can then be excluded from a specified area, stated by the officer asking them to leave, for up to 24 hours.
Youths under the age of 16 can be taken home after 9pm by officers as part of the order which started on Monday, December 16 and lasts for six months.
Sgt. Andy Phillips, of the Heanor and Loscoe Safer Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “We’ve worked with the council to bring in this dispersal order to help us target concerns about nuisance behaviour and damage where youngsters have been gathering, particularly around car parks, recreational grounds and some streets.
“The area overall has actually seen a small reduction in reports of anti-social behaviour over the past few months, but there are some places within that which are suffering from the majority of those calls.”
Between April and November 2013 there were a total of 633 reports of anti-social behaviour, 23 fewer than the same period in 2012.
During the last month (November 2013) there were 67 calls about anti-social behaviour in the Heanor and Loscoe area, compared to 72 during November 2012.
It is the second time these powers have been used in Heanor, as a six-month long order was used between July 2012 and January 2013.
More than 15 people were officially dispersed during that period, and two people arrested.
Sgt. Phillips added: “The dispersal order proved to be a helpful tool, and has been effective at reducing anti-social behaviour, but it continues to be a priority for us.
“We have worked with the council and partnership agencies, following consultation with local residents, to bring back these powers which allow police to actively target and remove potential troublemakers from the area quickly and effectively.
“We don’t want to make Heanor a no-go area for all teenagers, just those who not are behaving sensibly, causing damage and distress for other members of the community.”
Posters and leaflets about the dispersal order, along with a map showing the exclusion area, are being handed out to local residents and young people.
Activities are also being put on for youngsters, including a free OzBox session every Wednesday between 6pm and 7pm at the Wilmot Street Community Centre.
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