Middlesbrough's Neighbourhood Safety Wardens have gained additional powers to help them in their work keeping communities safe.
The town's 50-plus team of wardens have been granted delegated powers from Cleveland Police Chief Constable Richard Lewis as part of the Police Accreditation Scheme.
The added powers will mean wardens can do more to combat troublesome community issues such as dealing with antisocial behaviour, underage drinking, graffiti, fly posting, cycling on footpaths and other matters.
It will also be a criminal offence for a person not to give their name and address to an accredited officer.
These additional powers can be utilised anywhere in Middlesbrough and include:
- Power to issue penalty notices for disorder
- Power to issue fixed penalty notices for cycling on a footpath
- Power to issue fixed penalty notices for graffiti and fly-posting
- Power to require giving of name and address
- Power to deal with begging
- Power to require name and address for anti-social behaviour
- Power to require persons aged under 18 to surrender alcohol
- Power to seize tobacco from a person aged under 16
- Power to stop cycles
Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston said: "Our Neighbourhood Safety Wardens are here first and foremost to help people but will not shy away when they need to intervene on bad behaviour.
"These extra powers will give them the ability and the confidence to tackle any unruly or loutish stuff going on and I hope the message gets out to anyone who would misbehave in our communities that we will step in.
"I'd like to thank Richard Lewis for giving these added powers to the wardens. I think he's doing a great job as Chief Constable and if the police and the council can stick together I think we can make Middlesbrough's streets a lot safer."
Chief Inspector Daryll Tomlinson, from Middlesbrough Neighbourhood Team, said: "The additional powers being awarded to our local wardens will help us to combat crime and antisocial behaviour in Middlesbrough.
"We are already sharing information and working closely together in partnership with our local authority colleagues, however, we will now be able to support each other further in proactive enforcement activity and tackling offenders.
"It will help to strengthen our partnership working and help us deliver the best possible service to local communities in the town."
Cleveland Police's Community Safety Accreditation Scheme certificate lasts for an initial 12 months and all of Middlesbrough's wardens have passed their Non-Police Personnel Vetting (NPPV) for people working with the police who are not officers.