TWO community service programs that help rid the city of graffiti have been given the green light to keep running for a further two years.
Mayor Tom Tate said the programs were a valuable part of the City’s graffiti removal and prevention service.
“The City receives about 10,000 requests annually for graffiti removal. To date, the programs have resulted in more than 1000 hours of community service completed by participants including graffiti vandals,” Cr Tate said.
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“Program participants are shown that graffiti is unnecessary and unsightly, and cleaning it up gives them new skills and a greater sense of community,” he said.
Youth Justice undertakes a graffiti removal program for young offenders which targets graffiti hot-spots such as parks, toilet blocks and sporting clubs.
Attorney-General & Minister for Justice Jarrod Bleijie said “We are committed to making sure vandals are held accountable for their actions and make a positive contribution to the community.
“These clean-up orders are not only helping to reduce the amount of graffiti defacing our public places and property, but they also make vandals think twice about doing it in the first place.
This is all part of the Government’s strong plan to revitalise frontline services for families,” he said.
Mayor Tate said an average of three young people per week removed graffiti from City assets.
“In the past year, they have completed approximately 215 hours of community service, removing 3500 square metres of graffiti and 185 bags of litter, from 20 different sites around the city.
Queensland Corrective Services Regional Manager Tygh Field said in partnership with the City of Gold Coast, low-risk adult offenders also participate in the Graffiti Removal Community Service Program.
“All offenders participating in the program are supervised by trained City staff,” he said.
“It is not only an important part of rehabilitation for offenders, but it is benefiting the Gold Coast community.”
Mayor Tate said the programs were recognised for their value in rehabilitating the participants and for the lessons that could be taught.
“It also saves ratepayers money by reducing maintenance costs to the city.
“Feedback from participants indicates a change in attitude towards graffiti. They see the graffiti removal program as meaningful in terms of giving back to the community, and recognise graffiti is a problem for the wider community,” he said.