Ayden's Law progress update
By Anthony Smythe, Managing Director of BeatBullying
BeatBullying has worked tirelessly over the past 10 years to have bullying recognised in legislation by Government. With the help of justice campaigners Shy Keenan and Dr Sara Payne MBE and MP Tracey Crouch, we are thrilled to announce that we have done so.
Earlier this month, BeatBullying's new anti-bullying campaign, Ayden's Law, received news that it would be included in the Government's newly drafted Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill (ASBO), currently sitting before parliament.
Tracey Crouch MP proposed amendments to the ASBO, and Home Office Minister Jeremy Browne made the concession. We were able to include key aspects of Ayden's Law into the new ASBO bill, these are:
- A new injunction in the Prevent Nuisance and Disorder Bill (IPNA), which will replace the ASBO and will allow Headteachers to enforce injunctions on bullies. They join police officers, local authorities, housing providers, Transport for London and the Environment Agency who can also legally enforce such measures.
- A new 'Community trigger' will let members of communities request a review in situations where there have been several complaints about bullying. Community remedies are important because they are civil and not criminal and ensure an alternative to criminal prosecution in the majority of cases.
Crucially, these developments will reduce current levels of bullying-related criminal prosecutions. It will do this by providing smarter, non-criminal sanctions developed by local professionals who work with children, together with local authorities, schools and police.
For the person who is bullied, this means their safety will be protected. For the perpetrator it means that services work together to understand why that child is bullying and develop a suitable course of action which will effectively address those behaviours.
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