Keep Vandalism Out of Parks
Play is essential for the good health of all children. All communities need parks where play is an important part in the design of the park. Communities need to provide a safe quality area for children to develop. One assessment of the quality of a park is the “Playable Space Quality Assessment Tool” (PSQAT). The PSQAT evaluates three aspects of a park, Location, Play Value and Care and Maintenance.
The location involves using the natural aspects of the area to be accessible to the entire community needs. The Play Value must have a variety of options for children to explore and imagine. The Care and Maintenance is not only the visual care of the park, which is important, but also the safety of the park.
Even though most parks are closed to the public during the COVID-19, graffiti and vandalism is occurring at the parks. The cherished parks, where a budget of tears and sweat were used to create, are being manhandled and misused. When the stay at home orders are lifted the parks need to be ready. Rather than clean up after the vandalism has occurred – tools, like vandalism cameras, are available to maintain the dignity and safety of the park and stop criminal behavior before it begins. Most likely the unwanted behavior is executed by young teens frustrated with the restrictions placed upon them. But it could also be gang activity. Any suggestion of gang activity will make the park unsafe for the community. This is a challenging time for parks and recreation- make sure your department has the right tools.