Anti-social behaviour on London buses: an investigation into the perceptions of police officers, PCSOs and bus drivers

Elderfield, Alex (2010) Anti-social behaviour on London buses: an investigation into the perceptions of police officers, PCSOs and bus drivers. MSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    The purpose of this thesis is to investigate perceptions of the nature and extent of anti-social behaviour (ASB) on London buses from the perspectives of police officers, Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs), and bus drivers. It is clear that the generic definition of ASB describes a myriad of criminal and non-criminal offences and behaviours. This generic definition of ASB is arguably seen as being neighbourhood based by legislation (Crime and Disorder Act 1998), and descriptions of ASB on Home Office and Local Government websites. Within these definitions are included fly-tipping and abandoning cars on the street. This definition is not useful in relation to any ASB committed on buses. By their own admission, Transport for London (TfL) include ASB committed on London buses based on crime statistics provided by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) which themselves are obtained by a complicated search through the crime reporting system where key words such as ‘bus’ are included in certain fields within the electronic report. The existing organisational data currently available does not focus specifically or accurately on ASB on buses and therefore this research fills a gap in both knowledge and empirical research. The primary research is based on a survey which aims to identify the nature of ASB committed on buses from the perspective of those who patrol and drive the London bus routes. The findings from the survey concluded that respondents perceived that mixed-gendered, small groups of 10-16 year old youths committed ASB mainly on the top rear deck of double-decker buses. The most common forms of behaviour perceived as ‘anti-social’ are: rowdy behaviour, verbal abuse, littering and playing loud music. None of which by themselves are criminal offences and might be seen as quite common and are the likely behaviours exhibited by some young people when they are not under the supervision of either a known or a responsible adult. With the bus conductor phased out on all but the tourist orientated ‘Routemaster’ buses, the absence of a supervisory figure and the impracticality of PCSO and police officer presence on every bus, may be considered as relevant to this problem. In order to effectively manage ASB on buses, this research has concluded that it is necessary to specifically define its nature and context, in order to understand perceptions of this issue. A better understanding of perceptions of ASB on buses can inform a relevant and targeted response to the issue.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Institute of Criminal Justice Studies
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:49
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:16

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