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Protect Parks from Vandalism

Protect Parks from Vandalism

Protect parks from vandalism because obesity is one of the major leading causes of death in the U.S. And even if it doesn’t lead directly to death, being overweight has multiple and very serious long-term consequences, among them are: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes and more. Genetics plays a role in obesity, but lifestyle is usually the more contributing factor.

Did you know that children in Massachusetts have gained an average of 10lbs since the coronavirus outbreak? Schools, sports, park activities and other group physical activities have been canceled since March, and the United States is paying the toll. Children of the East Coast alone have gained an average of 7lbs. Instead of playing outside, children have fallen back on technology for entertainment. This goes to show us how important parks are.

Parks are essential for the health of children. Where adults rely on a scheduled exercise regimen for fitness, children simply rely on having fun. Children likely burn more calories playing hide-and-seek at a playground after school than adults do in a workout class. Unfortunately, graffiti and vandalism have increased at the parks during Covid.  That means, when Covid no longer prevents playing at the parks, the graffiti and vandalism will keep the parks off limits.

When playgrounds are destroyed by vandalism, they become unusable to children and they are at a higher risk of obesity. Cities must protect their parks from vandalism so that children can remain safe and healthy. Cities can stop vandalism before it happens by investing in cameras that deter crime from occurring. When the crime is prevented, parks can be preserved, and children can enjoy playing at the park and maintaining their physical health.

Protect your parks from vandalism.

#stopvandalism #novandalism #protectparks

Don’t Compromise your Parks to Vandalism

Don’t Compromise your Parks to Vandalism

Imagine your favorite childhood playground. What comes to mind when you picture it? More than likely, you reminisce over fond childhood memories, gliding down a shiny, bright-red slide and flying high on the chain-link swing then jumping off to see how far you’ll land. If you lived in a city that cared about parks, you probably don’t think of vandalism or graffiti in the form of broken-down park benches and swear words scratched into the play equipment. However because parks are often targeted, cities pay large amounts of money to fix damages done to parks to ensure the beauty of recreation sites.

In Louisville, KY, a 2015 report showed that since 2010, there have been nearly $400,000 worth of damages done to city parks (https://wfpl.org/breaking-cost-vandalism-louisvilles-parks/). Among the damages are graffiti and theft. A common occurrence that Louisville parks face is stolen trash cans. Thieves can make around $3 for reselling a metal trash can, whereas it costs parks $10 to replace. This seemingly small number adds up to a sum that could be used towards city events or updating community gathering areas.

Unfortunately, vandalism and destruction are fates that public places regularly face, but there are ways to minimize the damage and costs that parks encounter on an annual basis:

  • Purchase unbreakable equipment that is difficult to steal (i.e. trash cans that are fused to the cement)
  • Install gates with locks 
  • Install bright lights
  • Install anti-vandalism cameras

Accepting the ruin of a community recreational site is not an option. And cities should not forfeit large bulks of money to protect the beauty of their parks. Anti-Vandalism Cameras are a great resource to protect and deter vandalism and graffiti.

#Nograffiti #Novandalism #ProtectParks #WeAreParksAndRec #StopVandalism

Graffiti Attracts Crime

Graffiti Attracts Crime

Most people sense crime is higher in neighborhoods with graffiti. Neighborhoods that are run down and less kept seem to have higher crime rates and are often the targets of graffiti, but why is this? Does graffiti attract more crime or does criminal behavior attract graffiti? The truth is they go hand in hand with one another.

There is a scientific reason why graffiti and other crime are affiliated with each other, “The mere presence of graffiti doubles the number of people littering and stealing in a neighborhood, new research suggests”

Graffiti is sometimes gang-related and attracts very dangerous criminals, but it also causes others to partake in more petty crime, or “rule-breaking” activities. This may be because people assume the value of the city or neighborhood with graffiti is lower than ones without, so they think it is ok to further damage it. Or it could be that the ongoing crime makes others think it is ok and they will not receive consequences because others have not. The research gathered is inconclusive as to why exactly graffiti breeds more crime, but we know it does.

Despite not knowing exactly why graffiti inspires criminal activity, it is possible to prevent and stop it. Power tools that remove hard-stained graffiti should be used to clean up graffiti immediately before more graffiti occurs. But a more cost-efficient solution is to prevent the crime from taking place at all. Purchasing anti-graffiti cameras is a better option to prevent and stop graffiti. 

It is better for communities to never have graffiti as graffiti becomes a beacon for more crime. Crime creates more crime, and “harmless” graffiti is no exception.

What is your neighborhood doing to stop graffiti?

#stopgraffiti #nograffiti #security 

Safe Parks are Healthy for the Community

Safe Parks are Healthy for the Community

Parks are an invaluable asset to all communities.  Communities with well maintained parks are thriving communities of healthy people.  Parks increase the community’s physical activities and interaction.  Parks are also known to reduce stress even if one only sits at a park bench.

For a park to provide what the community needs there are certain aspects to take into consideration.  Several characteristics that can negatively impact a park is crime, the suggestion of crime, or the suggestion of gang activity such as graffiti.  Graffiti and vandalism not only change the esthetic look of the park, it changes the feel of a park and the park is no longer inviting.

Here are some suggestions to combat the negative behavior that impacts your park:

  • Make sure there is adequate lighting
  • Create activities and programs that involve the community
  • Have Site Managers
  • Have walking routes
  • Display Maps at entrances and walk routes
  • Have Security Measures in place, such as Graffiti Cameras and patrolling officers
  • Clean up all vandalism and graffiti immediately
  • Maintain safety measures for the park and all park equipment

The NRPA has a tool to help communities evaluate their parks.  This NRPA site provides interactive tools like custom reports on value and budgets and presents data and key insights.   It would be beneficial for your parks department to look at the tools provided and use what will enhance your agency’s performance.

Keep your Park safe for a healthy community!

#ParksAndRecreation #graffiti #novandalism #publicworks #deterrence #police