service wins £250,000 boost
popular council service which promises rapid removal of offensive
graffiti has won a £250,000 cash boost after councillors
agreed to step up their assault on the anti-scoial activities
of so-called 'taggers'. The
extra money will bring spending on measures to combat graffiti
to more than £600,000 in the current year.
council aims to remove racist and sexist graffiti from buildings
within 24 hours of being notified. For other outbreaks the
target is 48 hours.The
service is free and can be called to clear graffiti from any
privately-owned building - providing the owner consents.
new contract arrangements now being drawn up specialist cleaning
firms will be assigned to cover different parts of the borough.
new graffiti enforcement staff will be recruited on one-year
contracts to spearhead the new team. They will work closely
with the police and other agencies and develop new educational
initiatives with schools and youth clubs. Officials
will also step up intelligence activity - sharing information
with other public bodies and mounting covert surveillance
operations in vulnerable locations.
who provide information leading to a successful prosecution
can qualify for a reward of up to £1,000.
chairman Carol Humphries said the new investment was continued
evidence of the council's determination to stay on top of
"The extra money will help us to maintain our assault
against this anti-social behaviour. This
is a three-pronged blitz on a form of vandalism which if allowed
to grow unchecked would send out a desperate message of decay
and neglect. This in turn can lead to a climate where crime
flourishes because people think nobody cares about their neighbourhood.
will be using the money to do more on prevention, more on
catching offenders in the act and more on ensuring our cleaning
firms can keep up with the demand for the service. It
is lot of money but this is the price of civic pride. It's
easy for any council to say they care for the quality of life
in the borough - the hard part is turning fine words into
our investment shows is that we care. It is when authorities
stop caring that apathy and decline can set in amongst the
number to call for the council's 24 hour graffiti removal
service is 020 8871 7049.
team's performance will be reviewed throughout the year by
councillors to ensure it meets its service targets.
you have any comments on the
service or graffiti in general
please contact the editor
or post it on the forum.