Crime and anti-social behaviour concerns lead to community forum

Kingsway Bar and Bistro owner Ron Emery. Picture: Martin Kennealey d491580
Kingsway Bar and Bistro owner Ron Emery. Picture: Martin Kennealey d491580

A GROUP of residents and businesses concerned about anti-social behaviour and crime in Landsdale, Darch and Madeley have organised a community forum next week.

The March 20 forum at Kingsway Olympic Soccer Club will give residents an opportunity to raise concerns with police and local government, as well as State and Federal politicians, and discuss solutions.

Organisers include Madeley residents Janine Wood, of No Limits Perth, and Siham Carollisen, Darch residents Lorraine Robertson and Paul Fettis, Ron Emery, who owns Kingsway Bar & Bistro as well as a cafe and newsagency in Darch, and Philip Couper, of Landsdale.

Mr Couper said reports of crime and anti-social behaviour affected people’s sense of safety, leading to lower patronage of local businesses.

“These issues are having an effect on our community, as many now say they’re avoiding our facilities, i.e. Landsdale and Darch shops, Kingsway Shopping Centre, our parks, etc” he said.

Mr Couper said issues included home and car break-ins, fighting, vandalism, alcohol and drug issues, truancy, speeding and parking issues, as well as homelessness, vagrancy and begging.

Mr Emery said he was concerned about the number of young people who looked under 15 that were out “at all times of night” and other crimes, including a recent hold-up.

“We are getting young kids running into our bottle shop and grabbing things and running out,” he said.

“Part of the problem is there’s no punishment; the law doesn’t deal with them the way it should.”

Mr Emery said while police would charge people and courts would order them to make restitution, businesses often did not get paid back and legal costs or insurance excess fees were higher than the value of stolen items.

He estimated that goods stolen in the past six months had been worth a couple of thousand dollars.

The business owner said he hoped the forum would lead to solutions to the crime issues and encourage more people to report incidents to authorities.