Derry mother ‘disgusted’ by anti-social behaviour

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A local mother who has been placed into temporary accommodation in Argyle Street has said she is ‘disgusted’ by anti-social behaviour in the area.

The single mother of two, who does not wished to be named, has been living in the street since January and has not had a full night’s sleep since she moved in.

Last week alone, she has missed two days work and her children have missed two days of school because of the impact the anti-social behaviour is having on them.

An outhouse at the property was broken into two weeks ago and was vandalised with spray paint and the resident has been kept awake by the noise of people partying, fighting and driving erratically in the street.

The resident has reported the incidents to police and to the council and community wardens in the area.

She has also been in contact with the Ulster University, as she believes some students are involved in the anti social behaviour.

“It is so bad, I have never experienced anything like this and I have lived in London, America and many other places around the world.

“Friends have told me I should have known better that to move into this street because it is a student area. I didn’t think it would be anything like this and now I feel like I am stuck.

“I had already made the decision to move here and I don’t want to uproot my children again until we get somewhere permanent.

“I don’t want to paint the students of Derry in a bad light, that is the last thing I would want to do, but they are absolutely causing havoc around here.”

The woman said she is ‘exhausted’ by the behaviour of some of those living in the area, which she described as ‘absolutely disgusting’.

“Something needs to change because it can’t keep on like this.”

She has reported the anti-social behaviour to Derry City and Strabane District Council, Ulster University and police.

The Policing and Community Safety Partnership has provided and fitted additional security equipment to her home following the burglary, which is being investigated by the PSNI.

They have appealed for anyone for with information to contact officers at Strand Road on 101, quoting reference 455 of 15/02/19.

A spokesperson for Ulster University has said that they do not tolerate anti-social behaviour. The University said it makes presentations to students on an annual basis about the consequences of anti-social behaviour. They said: “Ulster University is proud of our role in the community and the positive contribution our talented students make to society but we do not tolerate anti-social behaviour. We have been working with students from the start of the academic term to underline the impact of anti-social behaviour, both on the local community and on future career prospects.

The University said that they will ‘fully investigate all reports made to us and begin disciplinary action where we have the necessary evidence to do so’.

A spokesperson for DCSDC said it is aware of ‘ongoing issues of anti-social behaviour in the Argyle Street area’. They confirmed that Community Safety Wardens had stepped up patrols in the area and PCSP Officers were working with other agencies including the PSNI, Ulster University and Housing Executive to find a lasting resolution to these problems.” The spokesperson added that the Council’s Environmental Health Service is also aware of the issue in Argyle Street and is investigating whether a statutory noise nuisance can be confirmed.

The Housing Executive confirmed that they are aware of the burglary and will be in touch with the woman as soon as permanent accommodation becomes available.

However, in the meantime the resident said her life is being made a misery because of the anti-social behaviour.

She told the ‘Journal’: “I just want it to stop.”