Parents have a critical role in helping their children develop good values and behaviour. Conversely, poor parenting increases the risks of involvement in anti-social behaviour. We will develop parenting services nationally and focus help on those parents who need it most. We will expand national parenting provision and establish a new National Parenting Academy for front line staff. We will legislate to increase the circumstances, and organisations that can apply for a parenting order, where a child’s behaviour requires it.
A new approach to the most challenging families We will take a new approach to tackle the behaviour of ‘problem families’ by challenging them to accept support to change their behaviour, backed up by enforcement measures. In 2006, a network of intensive family support schemes will be launched that target these challenging families. We will make additional investment available for parenting programmes as part of a coordinated approach across children’s and adult services in these areas.
We will, across government, improve the way public services respond to problem families’ in the longer term. Improving behaviour and attendance in schools The values and behaviour that support respect foster a positive environment where teachers can teach and children can learn. We will legislate to ensure parents take responsibility for their child’s behaviour in the classroom and when they are excluded from school. We will also improve provision for suspended and excluded pupils.
Tackling poor attendance and behaviour in schools is particularly important since truancy and exclusion have been proven to lead to anti-social behaviour. We will extend targeted action against truancy and place a new duty on local authorities to identify children missing school and support them back into education. Activities for children and young people We know that about seven out of ten parents and young people think that young people commit crimes because there is not enough for them to do.
That’s why we want to expand the role of sport, constructive activities and volunteering as positive routes to nurture a culture of respect amongst young people, particularly those from deprived backgrounds. Specifically, we will develop Britain’s first national youth volunteering service, establish a sports champion mentoring programme and continue to support existing mentoring projects. We will also expand the Youth Opportunity Fund and pilot Youth Opportunity Cards in a number of areas. Strengthening communities Respect cannot be built by central government or local services.
Strong communities are an essential part of making that happen. However, services can create the opportunity for those to develop. If people are too scared to go out, or the see that those in authority don’t confront problems how can we expect them to have the confidence to do so, or to access the support that could help them change their lives. The Respect programme aims to make local government, housing and policing more accountable to local people – empowering them to take control of their community. Effective enforcement and community justice
We will continue our drive to ensure effective, swift and proportionate responses and sanctions by further extending the menu of powers available to local communities to deal rapidly and effectively with ‘low level’ anti-social behaviour. We will also broaden the range of people able to use existing powers. We will strengthen the powers available for frontline agencies as well as streamlining the case management of Anti-social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) within the courts. We plan to roll out a national ‘community payback’ scheme of visible and constructive punishment for offenders.