Willagee councillor Patricia Phelan tabled a motion at last week’s council meeting asking chief executive Shayne Silcox to write to the department’s director-general, requesting it help quell persistent anti-|social behaviour and its negative impact on the community. The motion was passed unanimously.
‘Break-ins, threats and unkind behaviour are having an impact on surrounding residents,’ Cr Phelan said.
‘Families are moved from one suburb to another having caused mayhem in one suburb, despite being warned time and time again.’
Willagee Alive founding member Brenda Pittman said the community had many strengths and it was a small number of people who behaved badly.
‘We get tarred with the same brush, but it’s the minority who act like this,’ she said.
‘It shouldn’t have got to this. The department needs to amend its policies so that instead of rewarding bad behaviour by moving people to another suburb, they help people build the skills they need.
‘Instead of looking for blame, look for a solution to the problem.’
She said Willagee Alive had a close relationship with the community, including local business owners who sponsored the group’s newsletter.
‘The Friends of Webber Reserve, Roy Neal Project and Neighbourhood Watch all work closely with us to help improve the whole community,’ she said.
‘But you can only affect those who want to do it.’
Palmyra police officer-in-charge Senior Sergeant Craig Collins said there had been no evidence of increased crime in Willagee in the past year, but police were called from time to time to deal with neighbourhood disputes.
‘We work extremely closely with Neighbourhood Watch and the Department of Housing in an effort to engage the community,’ he said.