Police will be able to ban rowdy youngsters from the city centre for 24 hours under a new dispersal zone which comes into force today.
The zone will allow officers to order groups of two or more to leave the area if they are causing trouble – and prosecute them if they return.
It follows a public consultation by Police Scotland over the plan and there were no objections to it.
The decision to use the power of dispersal is due to an increase in police calls concerning youth-related crime.
Between March 16 and April 14 there was a total of 82 youth-related calls reported – an increase of 47 on the same period last year.
The dispersal zone will last for three months, with a view to extending it if successful.
Community policing team inspector Vicky Stables said: “We think this is proportionate considering the escalation. There has obviously been a significant increase in antisocial behaviour.
“We consider it to be an additional tool in our policing methods, however we will be using it with discretion.
“We still want to encourage youths to come into the city centre.
“This is just for the minority of youths who engage in antisocial behaviour or congregate in substantially large groups which can be intimidating for other members of the public.
“Historically, antisocial behaviour has increased during the warmer months and the school holidays.
“We are using this as a preventative measure as opposed to any sort of an enforcement.
“We don’t just disperse them out of the area and forget about them.
“We will contact our partners and put out a letter to their parents to encourage them to behave lawfully when they return to the city centre. We are trying to encourage them to divert them into positive destinations.”
The scheme will be focused on young people between the ages of 12 and 20.
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A similar project was introduced in Torry in 2011 and was a great success.
This weekend police officers will be speaking to the youngsters to let them know the dispersal zone is in place and to point them in the direction of alternative activities, including those by Dennis Law Streetsports.
Councillor Jennifer Stewart, Aberdeen City Council public protection committee convener, said: “Our city centre is vibrant and safe, which is recognised through our Purple Flag award, and the area is one we can all be proud of.
“A small number of people have been responsible for antisocial and offending behaviour and we will always support robust action to help ensure the safety of all who live in and visit our city centre.
“The order will help ensure all residents and visitors can enjoy their visit.”