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Manurewa Councillors Pleased On Govt Graffiti Bill

Government Intiative Graffiti Bill

Manurewa Councillors Anne Candy, John Walker and Colleen Brown are pleased that the government is supporting a national Graffiti Bill on the back of the local Manukau Bill that the Councillors have been advocating for since 2004.

However all three Councillors were somewhat perturbed that the government chose to launch the Bill at the Clendon skatepark in Manurewa, a well-known tagging site. The three long-serving Councillors feel that Manurewa has been the focus of a lot of negative media attention and giving more publicity to taggers is not helpful in their fight to eradicate and prevent tagging.

‘The last things we need to do is publicise taggers ‘signature’ marks nationwide, giving them even more publicity via the media. Before the launch I asked that their tags be striked through as an act of ‘non acceptance’ and shame,’ explained Anne Candy.

Colleen Brown stated that, ‘This form of urban blight is repulsive. Our ward has had the attention of the nation upon it for some weeks now. We are in a healing process. We don’t need further negative attention.’

The proposed government Bill was debated as a confidential item at the Policy and Activities Committee on Thursday 14th. Whilst many Councillors agreed it was a start in the right direction, a number of flaws were highlighted by the Councillors.

‘A young man has died. Whilst the Manukau Bill is still before the House, we are also pleased this new Bill has been pushed into the urgency category,’ said Mrs Candy.

‘We will be urging our Community Board to make a submission to the Bill’, said Councillor John Walker. ‘Manurewa needs to take a strong stand on this matter. We are all sick and tired of seeing our community defaced by young people who seem to have no respect for our community. ’

‘We need more youth workers in Manurewa, to work with our families ’, stated Mrs Candy. ‘At present we have three Ministry of Social Development funded youth workers for the whole of the Manurewa area, but we certainly need at least seven more if we are to turn youth away from tagging property. People don’t seem to understand the magnitude of the problem. This is an issue that needs long term investment by the whole community, including Council, the police and other government agencies. ‘


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