Call to demolish toilets

Citizens Advocates for Wellington Square convenor Greg Johnson is calling for the demolition of the Wellington Square toilet block. Picture: Andrew Ritchie www.communitypix.com.au d425936
Citizens Advocates for Wellington Square convenor Greg Johnson is calling for the demolition of the Wellington Square toilet block. Picture: Andrew Ritchie www.communitypix.com.au d425936

Mr Johnson urged the State Government and City of Perth to stop ignoring the hostile behaviour and issues with the toilet block, which he has been campaigning to get rid of for more than two years.

‘There is fornication, urination, there is defecation, there is assault, there’s been rapes ” every anti-social and hostile activity known to our community emanates out of this place,’ Mr Johnson, who lives across from the park, said.

‘There is a group living there right now, they have been there for two weeks.

‘It breaches every occupation health and safety regulation and puts the community in danger and that’s the responsibility that the council and the whole of government has.

‘It’s an asset that is owned by the City of Perth, it’s under their jurisdiction and its well time that these toilets were demolished and replaced with self-cleaning toilets of a smaller nature that are up to today’s modern standards.’

Perth MLA Elani Evangel has recently been in talks with State Government departments to establish initiatives to reduce anti-social behaviour in the park, but said more support was needed from the City.

‘I think that the City can help by removing the existing toilet blocks and replacing them with small self-cleaning units,’ Ms Evangel said.

‘What we are seeing is up to 12 people at a time using the existing toilet blocks as camping grounds.

‘This will get worse in the summer months.

‘In the meantime I will focus on what I can achieve from a State Government perspective and that is a focus on the park occupants.’

Ms Evangel also suggested that the City move the soup kitchens that frequent the park and revamp the space to include new lighting.

Perth police are spending in excess of 50 hours a week patrolling Wellington Square.

‘We’ve issued move-on-notices, responded quickly to complaints and use the City’s CCTV camera to keep an eye on the area,’operations manager Simon Hazell said.

‘We’ve thrown as many resources as possible at the issue and in our experience the problems of street drinking and anti-social behaviour have been declining.’