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Camden New Journal - by PAUL KEILTHY
Published: 7 February 2008
‘Name and shame youths’ plea puts politicians on spot

A DEMAND that youths given Asbos be “named and shamed” sparked a clash of competing civil rights on Monday.
The emotional plea that residents be told which teenagers had been given anti-social behaviour orders appeared to discomfort Lib Dem community safety chief Councillor Ben Rawlings.
It also prompted newly-appointed police commander Dominic Clout to question Camden’s high use of Asbos.
Speaking of the recent Asbo blitz on youths alleged to be behind the widely-reported disorder in Malden Road and Denton estate, Haverstock Safer Neighbourhoods panel chairman Simon Horvat-Marcovic said: “We have youths who have Asbos against them... but their pictures are not published.”
He told a community police consultative group meeting: “Unless we let people know these are the people who are banned, these are the people there is trouble with, how can we make sure that, if there are any breaches, there are actions against them?
“Why is it we cannot publish the names or photographs?”
Camden Council has issued 330 Asbos, by far the most of any borough in London, but has fought shy of revealing the identities of recipients under 18.
Although it has widely publicised adult Asbos, the Town Hall this month successfully appealed against an Information Commissioner’s order to release all details of Asbos to Guardian journalist David Leigh, who had made a Freedom of Information request.
But pressure to “name and shame” from Haverstock Safer Neighbourhoods panel and others, notably Gospel Oak Conservative councillor Keith Sedgewick, has forced Cllr Rawlings and his community safety team to review their policy.
At Monday’s meeting, Cllr Rawlings said: “There are procedures about publicity and we’re looking into this further, but it is not that simple a question. We don’t want to fuel people’s reputations, and we don’t want to stop people from stopping their offending behaviour and reoffending.”
But Chief Supt Clout, who moved to the borough three weeks ago, appeared to question Camden’s staunchly-de­fended record as a trailblazer of anti-social be­haviour legislation. He said: “There is no person on Earth who could re­member 330 faces. And if you’ve got 330... that kind can walk about without any kind of recognition.
“The point of Asbos is that they have got to be enforced. There is something about quality there as opposed to quantity.”

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