Anti-Social Behaviour Action Plan

On 27 March 2023, the Government launched their much anticipated “Anti-social Behaviour Action Plan”, which sets out a number of proposed commitments to tackle ASB. 


There are four main areas of focus: 

  1. Making communities safer 
  2. Building local pride 
  3. Prevention and early intervention 
  4. Improving data, reporting, and accountability for action 


In terms of broad brush proposals, the government intends to tackle ASB in the community by: 

  • Extending power of arrest to all breaches of civil injunctions. 
  • Scaling up hotspot enforcement with Police and uniformed authority figures, extending dispersal powers to local authorities, and increasing the length of dispersal. 
  • Lowering the age limit of community protection notices to include younger perpetrators. 
  • Increasing the use and size of on-the-spot fines for littering, graffiti, and fly-tipping. 
  • Reduce rough sleeping and begging. 
  • Providing immediate justice for perpetrators with reparative justice to start 48 hours after an offence with communities involved in deciding the type of punishment. 
  • Cracking down on illegal drugs including a new ban on nitrous oxide. It is anticipated that this ban will be introduced before the end of 2023, classing it as a Class C drug with potential prison sentences and unlimited fines for unlawful supply and possession. 
  • Introducing greater use of drug testing on arrest to identify drug users for night-time economy-related offending, offences linked to violence against women and girls, domestic abuse, serious violence, and anti-social behaviour. The scope of drugs tested is also proposed to be widened from certain opiates and cocaine to all Class A and selected Class B and C drugs. 


With regards to housing-related ASB, plans have been detailed to encourage orderly behaviour by strengthening powers in both private and social and housing to evict or sanction tenants who persistently cause anti-social behaviour to their neighbours. These include: 

  • Ensuring all private tenancy agreements include clauses specifically banning anti-social behaviour. 
  • Ensuring a two week notice period for all anti-social behaviour eviction grounds. 
  • Expanding the discretionary grounds for possession to make anti-social behaviour easier to prove in court: clarifying that any behaviour ‘capable’ of causing ‘nuisance or annoyance’ can lead to eviction. 
  • Speeding up the process of evicting an anti-social tenant by working with His Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) to explore how to prioritise anti-social behaviour cases in Possession Lists in the courts. 
  • Bringing forward legislation which would set out the principles that judges must consider when making their decision, such as giving weight to the impact on landlords, neighbours, and housemates and whether the tenant has failed to engage with other interventions to manage their behaviour. 
  • Introducing a “3 strikes and you’re out” eviction expectation. 
  • Preventing short-term lets importing anti-social behaviour into communities, such as noise problems or drunken and disorderly behaviour. 
  • Consulting on expanding Closure Powers. 
  • Setting clear expectations that ASB tools are exercised in a timely fashion by landlords. 
  • De-prioritising anti-social behaviour perpetrators to be at the back of the queue for social housing. 


A link to the Policy Papers is set out below, and our ASB team will keep a close eye on developments to provide an update in the future. 


For more information, contact our Head of ASB, Andy Moore, on 


Law is correct as at 27th March 2023 

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure that the law in this article is correct, it is intended to give a general overview of the law for educational purposes. You are respectfully reminded that it is not intended to be a substitute for specific legal advice and should not be relied upon as legal advice. No liability is accepted for any error or omission contained herein. 

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