Magazine article Public Finance

Anger Management

Magazine article Public Finance

Anger Management

Article excerpt

Britain, it seems, is becoming an angrier and more uncouth society.

According to the latest annual Social Trends survey, complaints about our neighbours loud music, noisy dogs and other annoying habits have increased five-fold in 20 years.

The Office for National Statistics thinks this might have something to do with smaller families being jammed into higher density housing. Or it might just be that everyone - particularly the younger generation - is behaving worse.

The teachers' unions certainly think so. At their annual grumpfests the National Union of Teachers threatened strike action over unruly pupils, while the National Association of Schoolmasters/Union of Women Teachers warned of an epidemic of cyber-bullying' on the internet.

Set against a wave of juvenile gun and knife crimes, it has all fuelled widespread panic over antisocial 'yob' culture - something the newly reconfigured Home Office (see cover feature on page 18) will be under pressure to address.

Meanwhile education secretary and deputy leadership hopeful Alan Johnson has come up with a catch 'em young, 'respect' agenda of his own.

Launching departmental guidance on bad behaviour in schools, he called for a 'new three Rs of rules, responsibility and respect. …

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