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The Kids Issue

Anti-social

An ASBO is an Anti-Social Behaviour Order given out to people who are always mucking about and getting in bother with the pigs.
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Κείμενο Alex Sturrock
1.9.06

Craig, 10 and Bobby, 12. Photos by Alex Sturrock

  An ASBO is an Anti-Social Behaviour Order given out to people who are always mucking about and getting in bother with the pigs.

Because kids are always messing around in the street when their families are dahn the pab, Britain’s youngsters are being handed out ASBOs by the rozzers faster than fake Louis Vuitton ‘andbags dahn Brixton market.

Getting an ASBO is a pretty major deal. Firstly, you don’t need evidence to get one; you just need a sufficient number of people to complain about you. And a lot of people have been complaining.

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When kids are given an ASBO, the courts will make up a special set of laws to suit each individual. Some people are banned from spitting at people, some people are banned from going above the 3rd floor of tower blocks because they work for pirate radio stations and others for keeping rowdy animals or taking a piss in their next-door neighbor's garden.

When a kid is given an ASBO, they’re promptly “named and shamed” by the local papers.

When this happens, the ASBO kids get shouted at and harassed in the street. Is this conducive to reforming young offenders? I don’t think it is.

Plus, having your face on the front of your Gazette as the top criminal in the area adds a frisson of danger to your street rep no? It’s almost a badge of honour.

I always got in trouble with the police as a kid so this subject interests me and I’ve been working on a photography project on ASBO kids for the last six months.

The latest part of my quest for people with ASBOs took me to Ely, just outside Cambridge, the heart of the English countryside. I was going there to see a traveller family, the Loveridges, who have two sons with ASBOs, received at the ages of 10 and 12. Craig, who is now 11, is the youngest person in the country to get an ASBO.

So, what did I find out?