Managing graffiti in our city
The best way to manage graffiti vandalism in our community is for every resident and business owner to remove graffiti straight after it appears.
Who does graffiti and why?
Graffiti is done by a wide range of people participating as individuals or in groups in their own neighborhoods or further afield. People do graffiti as a means of self-expression, for peer recognition, to indulge in risk-taking behaviour and to defy the law and society.
Who is responsible for removing graffiti?
- Council removes graffiti on its property. Offensive graffiti takes priority.
- On public property, the owner of the asset (eg. Telstra or Australia Post) is responsible.
- On private property, the property owner needs to remove the graffiti.
The sooner it is detected, the easier it is to remove and the less likely it is that the graffiti will be repeated.
Three steps to help stop graffiti
1. Report it
It is important that you report graffiti to police. There are three phone numbers (Australia-wide) that can be used to report incidences to police:
- For police attendance at a crime in progress – 000
- To report a crime that has already happened – 131 444
- To report information about known offenders or illegal activity – 1800 333 000 (Crime Stoppers).
- Alternatively, contact Albury Police on 02 6023 9299.
2. Remove it
Before removing graffiti, you are encouraged to photograph it and keep the images for the police in case they require them. Always remove or paint over graffiti as soon as possible after it is done. The sooner you detect graffiti, the easier it is to remove, as the paint has had less time to be absorbed into the structure. Fast removal (within 24 hours) lessens the exposure time of the graffiti and can deter graffiti vandals from 'retagging'.
Research shows that the best way to discourage repeat attacks of graffiti is to remove it as soon as it appears.
Removing graffiti is usually not a difficult task, particularly if the damage has occurred recently. Try a brush or scourer and soapy water first. Some people have had success with turpentine or methylated spirits. Always try any method on a very small inconspicuous area first to be sure it is effective. Please follow the safety instructions on any product you use.
Keep some of your fence/wall paint so that you can quickly reapply it if graffiti occurs.
If you cannot remove the graffiti, free graffiti removal kits are available from AlburyCity.
There are different kits for painted surfaces and for bare brick, stone and masonry surfaces.
To obtain a kit, take evidence of your address and a police incident report (ring 13 14 44) to Council and pick up your kit.
3. Prevent it
Tips for preventing graffiti.
- Plant trees, creepers or vines to cover blank or bare walls
- Use darker coloured materials or paints on fences
- Use anti-graffiti coatings on high-risk areas.
- Use rough or textured surface materials for fencing
- Limit the amount of solid surface by using mesh, grilles or lattice.
- Improve lighting and consider installing sensor lighting
- Keep your property clean and tidy
- Remove graffiti within 24 hours, as it will reduce the tagger's exposure and can make removal easier.
What is Council doing to manage graffiti?
AlburyCity recognises that graffiti has a significant financial and social impact on the community and has a negative impact on the wellbeing and sense of pride of its residents.
AlburyCity removes graffiti from its own property (public buildings, street furniture, parks, roads, footpaths, public artworks and bridges) as soon as possible after it is brought to the attention of Council.
Council will also remove graffiti from private property if it is offensive – for example, a swear word or a racial or religious slur.
AlburyCity aims to work in partnership with the people who live, work and conduct business in the city to encourage, promote and provide a clean city that is graffiti-free, welcoming and safe.