Keeping graffiti at bay
Bearing in mind that most graffiti simply makes objects look a mess, companies such as the London Underground have waged war on graffiti. London earns a hefty income from tourism and needs to portray a clean and respectable image apart from providing smart and comfortable transport for commuters.
It is becoming easier to monitor the trains and tunnels of the London Underground system with the advent of CCTV and mobile phones with cameras. People defacing property with graffiti are less likely to do it if within view of others who may photograph them and lead to their identification and prosecution.
- London transport advertise requests for members of the public to notify them of any instances of graffiti that they come across and of the perpetrators.
- The graffiti clean-up team can then be alerted to remove the offending graffiti as quickly as possible because that in itself is a deterrent.
- London transport have also successfully sued a graffiti artist for the costs of removing their graffiti.
Other methods of reducing graffiti
It is not economically possible or socially desirable to have CCTV everywhere. There is a balance between protection , security and privacy. One strategy that London Underground has employed is to tile walls so that they are easily cleaned when someone draws on them and yet colourful and attractive.
There are other surfaces and special chemical applications that make graffiti much more easily removed and this is worth considering for areas where graffiti becomes a constant problem.
Signs requesting a phone call to report graffiti or a description of the offenders is also a deterrent.
Educating the children from a young age
Schools in Britain teach citizenship to foster responsible behaviour in its citizens from an early age. It does not prevent anti-social behaviour but helps young people recognise what it means to be anti-social and the benefits of working together for a pleasant safe environment.
Cross curricular graffiti activities in schools are able to incorporate drama across a variety of subjects such as art, music, drama, business studies, Information Technology and more depending on the activities undertaken. Awareness raising campaigns usually include competitions, posters, dramatic productions, advertising leaflets, surveys and research.
This type of education is lacking in many other countries to their detriment. See 'Graffiti is a worldwide problem'.