Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 2 Hansard (17 February) . .
often their back fence or side fence is graffitied—vandalised—time after time after time. They may start off with the very best intentions of removing that graffiti. We all know that the quicker graffiti or vandalism is removed and tidied, the greater the deterrent for the perpetrators of that vandalism. But home owners start to get weary of having to do this over and over again, so surely there can be a better solution.
It is not just back fences and fences facing unleased crown land; I often hear examples of toilet blocks, for example, at the Fadden Pines park, and the backs of houses in Monash, Gowrie, Wanniassa, Greenway, Isabella Plains and Chisholm being vandalised, but there are also things like the little electricity substations that you see around the place. Some of them have been artistically painted, and that is great to see, but the ones that remain plain are often defaced with graffiti vandalism, and it does take a bit of effort to get them cleaned up.
When I pointed out these things on behalf of my constituents to the minister at the time, Minister Rattenbury—hopefully that will continue with the new minister—they were addressed quite quickly, and I would like to express my appreciation to directorate staff for doing that. I understand it is a constant battle for them. But for home owners who are either unaware of graffiti on their back or side fences or are getting a bit tired of having to clean it up again and again, there should be another way of addressing it. That is why I commend Mrs Jones's motion to the Assembly today.
MS BERRY (Ginninderra—Minister for Housing, Community Services and Social Inclusion, Minister for Multicultural and Youth Affairs, Minister for Sport and Recreation and Minister for Women) (4.45): I want to make a few brief comments about Mrs Jones's motion and Ms Fitzharris's amendment to that motion and some of the comments that Mr Rattenbury made as well as Ms Fitzharris. I particularly want to refer to Mrs Jones's comments around the connection between taggers and street art and the diversionary kind of work that the coordinator would be doing in trying to redirect people, particularly young people, and moving their tagging work into providing some really beautiful art for the rest of the community to enjoy.
Mrs Jones has a view that this is not the case and that it will never work and that we cannot divert people from doing this tagging and being disengaged from the community. I would prefer to see a more inclusive position from the government, which is the role the graffiti coordinator will be taking on as well as with the street art community, including street artists like Geoff Filmer. He has been really great at mentoring some of the younger people in our community and bringing them into the fold and giving them a chance to display their talent.
It has been mentioned a couple of times, but Tocumwal Lane in Canberra's CBD is where the commercial street art community and CBD Limited work together to open up that space for people to be able to display their art. That is really quite a success. I went down there while some of the artists were showing their talents and doing all that beautiful art on the walls and I met a young artist who had previously been a tagger and who had realised that that was not a way that she was going to get her art recognised or acknowledged in any significant way. Her family put her in touch with the street art community through Geoff Filmer, and on that day her parents and her
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