Following the recent spate of anti-social behaviour in Keynsham, the town council says it is working in close partnership with local community organisations and individuals to try to resolve the issue.
There have been problems in and around the library at the Civic Centre, and some nearby shops and the problems worsened over the school summer holidays, with children aged from 12 upwards said to be causing anxiety and fear with their abusive and threatening behaviour during the daytime.
“We’re taking the recent increase of anti-social behaviour in Keynsham very seriously” said town clerk Dawn Drury today. “We want to better understand the root cause of the behaviour in order to implement effective and long-lasting change – for the community, for the businesses and importantly for the young people affected.”
As part of a joint commitment between Bath and North East Somerset Council and Keynsham Town Council to address anti-social behaviour, it has been agreed that ‘Street Doctors’ (junior doctors) will provide training for the town clerk and youth staff, as well as sessions at the town’s TimeOut Centre for young people. This training follows a harm-reduction model, giving young people first aid skills to keep themselves and their friends safer whilst also discussing related issues, rather than giving them a direct ‘just don’t carry a knife’ message, which doesn’t work for many of those who the team are working with.
Avon Fire & Rescue Service’s fire safety intervention scheme will undertake some direct work with young people who have been misusing fire in their homes, communities or schools. This is to address the numerous fires started by young people at the derelict Treetops building in St Clements Road.
The town clerk, or a representative of the town council’s youth service, will attend the monthly Avon & Somerset Police anti-social behaviour meetings to share intelligence gathering. The clerk will also attend a meeting with the department within B&NES Council that deals with missing children to better understand how the arrangements work.
Meanwhile the police aim to increase foot patrols.
Keynsham Town Council advises residents and business owners to report any concerns relating to anti-social behaviour in Keynsham via 101 or 999 immediately if the anti-social behaviour should involve violence or be of a serious nature to cause danger to people or property.