Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Battling the Age-Old Problem of Graffiti Vandalism

Graffiti vandalism has been a common problem certain suburbs of Sydney and indeed all over the world. A hotspot of this type of crime is urban railway and transit systems, though it’s interesting to note the variations in graffiti in different cities.


In New York, graffiti has been a major problem, yet it is not nearly as much of an issue in San Francisco for example. This is also true for Australian cities as well. The rate of graffiti in Melbourne and Sydney is much higher compared to Perth, Adelaide or Canberra.

The Australian Institute of Criminology has conducted research into possible causes of graffiti vandalism. The study was actually funded by the New South Wales state rail way authority, which spends a huge amount every year to clean it up after graffiti vandals and other kinds of damage. For example, the cost of repairing damage due to vandalism and graffiti removal was $4.76 million in the year 1984-85. While it was many years ago, this demonstrates just how much of a negative effect it can have. Graffiti vandalism can also have the effect of causing delays in the train system, however the most tragic occurrence is injury or even death to those doing he graffiti; in 1986 4 young people were killed by trains while doing so.


So why would people graffiti if it has these kinds of effects? Research has found that Sydney graffitists come from a wide range of age group and family types. But the majority of them are young adolescents. Most are divided into small groups and geographic areas. Another common characteristic is the tendency of traveling frequently from one place to another. These vandals have low level of education and come from relatively large families.

A collector of Australian graffiti Rennie Ellis has described this as “The result of someone’s urge to say something, to comment, inform, entertain or simply confirm to his or her existence in this World.” Some other facts which is revealed by the Australian Institute of Criminology is:
  1. Sydney young people regard the removal of graffiti as relatively low priority compared with adults.
  2. Graffiti on trains is seen as a form of self-expression where graffitists believe they are creating public art.
  3. It is the fact that most people find graffiti to be offensive or even abhorrent that fuels the fire, so to speak. It is this that makes young people more determined to do it.
It is also suggested that some policy formulation is needed to stop graffiti vandalism. This includes cleaning graffiti as quickly as possible and taking action against graffiti when it does happen. At Priority Coatings, we are doing everything we can to battle the problem. So if you require graffiti removal services, contact us immediately!

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