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ASBO nationThe criminalisation of nuisance$
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Peter Squires

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781847420282

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847420282.001.0001

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The ASBO and the shift to punishment

The ASBO and the shift to punishment

(p.135) Seven The ASBO and the shift to punishment
ASBO nation

Burney Elizabeth

Policy Press

New Labour's ‘tough on crime’ mantra heralded the introduction of a range of criminal justice policies intended to turn this into a reality, a tendency that has brought new instruments of punishment and control every year since 1997. The earliest and still the most controversial was the introduction of the Anti-Social Behaviour Order (ASBO) in the Crime and Disorder Act of 1998. The measure immediately attracted criticism for its legal form and for its potentially punitive reach. It stands at one end of a punitive spectrum that ranges through to a huge increase in imprisonment and indeterminate sentences that occurred under the Blair administration. In designing the instrument that was originally called the ‘community safety order’, the Labour government was determined to bypass the prosecution process that it considered ineffective in dealing with persistent neighbourhood nuisance, and at the same time to bind alleged perpetrators with tailor-made restrictions enforced by threat of punishment.

Keywords:   New Labour, criminal justice, punishment, Anti-Social Behaviour Order, community safety order, crime, Crime and Disorder Act

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