Antisocial Behaviour

Published on Saturday, 22 May 2021 at 2:51:00 PM

Yesterday I experienced firsthand the anti-social behaviour that I’ve often had complaints about in the CBD.

The antisocial behavior escalated during the morning to fighting and a chase along Hannan Street that caused great consternation to all who witnessed these half dozen young men carry on without regard to those around them.

I was collecting for a very popular and worthwhile charity, and until then I was getting a constant stream of donations from passersby, but once the shouting and fighting started, people moved away from St Barbara’s Square. It is little wonder shopkeepers in Hannan Street and Burt Street despair that their already precarious retail trade gets impacted on from people from the lands and Tjuntjunjara, who seem to have little regard for others. It is terrible that we have almost grown to accept that this is part of life in towns like Laverton, Leonora and Kalgoorlie-Boulder. We shouldn’t, and as Mayor I will continue to push for the CDC and Banned Drinkers register that should be coming later this year or early next year.

It was sad to watch some of these young men sit around in CBD with clearly nothing else to do other than watch the world go by, and the trouble is, as the old saying goes, idle hands are the devil’s tools. It was apparent to me that many of the young men were not regular drinkers and of course, back in their communities would never drink, however, I could see how they could drift into that lifestyle when they eventually wandered towards to the two CBD bottle shops where others were gathered.

It is a pity that at a time when there are so many job vacancies, we have young people unemployed. This is exacerbated in the communities because Canberra got rid of the CDEP program of working for the dole, which while it may not have worked in capital cities, was successful in regional and remote areas.

The police attended yesterday’s fracas, and they did an excellent job, but clearly have to put up with this type of behavior in an almost daily basis, and must get despondent that these young men have nothing else to do other than cause problems in our community. We should not accept that this is normal behavior, and that when visitors come to our town, we should expect that they would treat us with respect, as we would to them if we were visiting their communities.

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