Scots loath to give under-18s Asbos

Only 16 per cent of the antisocial behaviour orders issued in
Scotland in 2003-4 were given to young people aged between 16 and
18, according to figures published this week.

A report by the Scottish executive reveals that only 20 Asbos
were issued for this age group, out of the 129 granted across the

The report of the first phase of a three-year study of the use
of Asbos in Scotland also predicts it is “unlikely” that Asbos will
be used against young people aged 12 to 15 when the Antisocial
Behaviour (Scotland) Act 2004 comes into force.

Although the act lowers the minimum age for receiving Asbos, a
children’s hearing must be held before a sheriff can consider
granting one to someone aged under 16 and children aged between 12
and 15 cannot be jailed for breaching an order.

The report says dealing with the younger age group will require
specific policy “directly involving” social work and children’s
panels, and suggests that children’s services departments could
play a “pivotal role” in determining if and how Asbos are used.

Report from


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