New powers to combat anti-social behaviour in parks agreed
10 September 2019
New powers to tackle anti-social behaviour and help everybody enjoy Brent's parks have been agreed by Brent Council.
The council’s Cabinet unanimously agreed on Monday (September 9) to back the introduction of a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) to tackle issues such as illegal drug use, littering and driving vehicles like mopeds through the boroughs green spaces. Breaching a PSPO is a criminal offence and could lead to a £100 fine or a penalty of up to £1,000 if prosecuted.
Brent Council worked closely with the community and specialist organisations to draw up the PSPO. During the consultation, people who regularly walk in Paddington Cemetery raised concerns about rule changes meaning they would need to keep dogs on leads. This has been taken into consideration and has been amended in the final PSPO.
Following feedback from St Mungo's, which advocates on behalf of vulnerable and homeless individuals, council officers will continue to refer vulnerable and homeless individuals for support in the first instance, rather than taking enforcement action.
Cllr Tom Miller, Lead Member for Community Safety & Engagement, said: "Parks and open spaces are for everyone to enjoy and this PSPO will give us the powers we need to deal with the anti-social behaviour that residents report to us and make our parks cleaner, safer and even more enjoyable to be in.”
Last year, the council spent around £45,000 keeping parks free of litter and £200,000 on repairs, with vandalism contributing to the destruction of fences, pathways and grass.