Sunday, March 20, 2005

Chris Pond and antisocial behaviour

The funniest story of the weekend has to be the police cautioning of Chris Pond, the Work and Pensions Minister, over an incident of criminal damage. The BBC has the full details here.

Mr Pond told the Mail on Sunday: "I decided to bring the nightmare to an end by accepting a police caution." I am sure we all feel his pain.

In the past he has taken a different line on the subject (note to Labour Party press officers: it is a good idea to put a date on your media releases):

Anti Social behavior causes untold misery, corrodes communal life, undermines public services and forces people to live in fear in their own homes.

As Minister in the Department of Work and Pensions, I am looking at the possibility of using housing benefit sanctions against those who commit anti social behavior (sic).

The best comment on the whole affair comes from Peter Black:
The question is that when Ministers like Chris Pond supported all those measures to deal with anti-social behaviour did they envisage them applying to people living in refurbished Grade 2 listed 18th-century houses, thought to be worth £750,000?

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