Graffiti in Australia – The Stats & The Facts

infographic - effects and impact of graffiti in australia

It’s common knowledge that graffiti is an illegal act which has plagued society for years. But how many people really understand the impact and ramifications it has throughout society?

Graffiti vandalism is most commonly conducted by males aged between 12-25 years, peaking at the ages of 15 and 16. What surprises most, is that graffiti is conducted by those across all social backgrounds, it’s not exclusive to the lower-socioeconomic classes (Source: Australian Institute of Criminology).

These individuals often succumb to peer pressure; the need to “fit in”. This boosts their self-esteem and provides enjoyment during the act of conducting graffiti, viewing it afterwards and having it recognised by others.

Graffiti places an enormous strain on society in more ways than one. For many, graffiti is a gateway crime. On the search for greater thrills, graffiti vandals resort to shoplifting, destruction of property and other forms anti-social gang behaviour (Source: Australian Institute of Criminology).

Graffiti also has numerous financial implications. All levels of society are left out of pocket, from state and local government, business owners, schools, sporting clubs and community organisations, all the way to homeowners.

In New South Wales alone, graffiti costs local government and property owners more than $300 million annually. In Victoria, a graffiti removal program has removed more than two million square metres of graffiti since 2005 – enough to cover the MCG approximately 100 times! (Source: Keeping Australia Beautiful)

Those who don’t act upon graffiti quickly often face repeated acts of vandalism. Graffiti vandals want their tags to remain visible, seeking locations which are rarely maintained and pose a low risk of being caught.

Other implications for business owners include loss of reputation and revenue potential as customers are deterred from entering your premises.

The solution is to act upon graffiti as quickly as possible. Report it to the police; this will help in the eventual capture and rehabilitation of the perpetrator.

The most important step is to remove the graffiti within 48 hours. Avoid abrasive measures such as sanding, scraping or harsh chemicals such as bleach. This damages the underlying surface, causing bricks and render to crumble, timber to rot and metal to rust. These techniques won’t fully restore the surface, resulting in marks, discolouration or white shadowing.

The most effective way to restore your surface and reduce the likelihood of further incidents of graffiti is to dissolve the molecular structure of the graffiti. Once this has occurred, the graffiti can be drawn to the surface and removed with ease. No abrasive measures or harmful chemicals are necessary!

Additional measures can be taken to make your property less of a graffiti target. These include growing leafy trees or bushes in front of walls, painting artistic murals, using rough, uneven finishes on walls and semi-permeable fencing.

The Graffiti Eaters have over 40 years’ experience in graffiti removal and prevention. We help everyone from large businesses such as Woolworths, 7/11, Kmart and Commonwealth Bank, to local governments, schools and homeowners. Find out more about our graffiti removal services or request a quote!

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