Repossession for antisocial behaviour in North Belfast
Published: Mon, 9 Jul 2012
We recently took possession of a property in the New Lodge area of North Belfast in response to complaints about severe anti-social behaviour.
On 6 June 2012, we went to court and secured an Order for Possession of the property in Oisin House. The order was granted on the grounds of proven unacceptable behaviour by the tenant, which included loud music, parties and abusive behaviour.
After hearing the evidence, the Judge had no hesitation in granting the Housing Executive an Order for Possession. The order required the occupant to vacate the property.
We take the issue of anti social behaviour very seriously. By undertaking this course of action we are attempting to offer protection to victims and reassurance to communities that anti social behaviour and nuisance will not be tolerated and that every individual is entitled to live in peace within their neighbourhood.
We have a number of remedies at our disposal. These range from early interventions such as formally warning individuals of the possible legal consequences should their anti social behaviour continue, the use of mediation or Acceptable Behaviour Contracts, which include an offer of additional support to divert the individual away from further anti social activity. Where agreement cannot be reached or where early interventions fail, such as this case, we will not hesitate to use legal measures including, as a last resort, the repossession of a property.
We will continue to work closely with communities to ensure that anti social behaviour does not take hold. However, to be truly effective in challenging this behaviour we need people to come forward and report incidents as and when they occur. Unless we know about such incidents, we cannot tackle them. We therefore urge anyone who has experienced or witnessed incidents of anti social behaviour to come forward and report it to their local district office or the PSNI so that appropriate action can be taken against those responsible.
A complaint about anti social behaviour can be made in writing or verbally (in person or by phone) to any Housing Executive District Office. Complaints can also be logged via email. The complaint does not have to come from the individual experiencing the nuisance. A political representative, police officer, council official, social worker, family, friend, neighbour, or in the case of Oisin House a concierge, can make the initial complaint on their behalf.
When a report of anti social behaviour is received, the office will acknowledge the complaint and make arrangements to interview the complainant. All reports received will be dealt with in a confidential manner. We believe that anyone who engages in anti social activity, either within or in the locality of its estates, must take responsibility for their actions. We will take whatever action is needed to stop the anti social behaviour from continuing.
Every case of anti social behaviour is unique with the solution determined by the particular circumstances of the case.