Vandalism is a bigger problem than you may think. Have you ever seen graffiti-covered walls, torn pages in library books, scribbling on fences, or spray painted garbage cans? All of these things count as vandalism. Vandalism is the willful destruction of property that is not your own. A community that has signs of vandalism gives criminals the impression that residents don’t care about their neighborhood, and a neighborhood that doesn’t care is an easy target for crime. To repeat—a neighborhood that doesn’t care attracts criminal activity. Don’t let this happen to your neighborhood—take a stand against vandalism.
Kids who vandalize usually have a lot of time and nothing else better to do.
Reasons why people vandalize are:
- Peer pressure
Vandalism takes many forms such as
- Spray painted mailboxes, light posts, fences, garage doors, or garbage cans
- Broken street lights
- Spray painted street signs
- Gang tagging an area
- Illicit drug availability area tagging
- Writing in library books
- Restrooms have always been prime areas for vandalism.
Vandalism is costly
- Millions of dollars each year are spent on cleaning up graffiti and repairing or replacing vandalized equipment.
- Local governments and taxpayers pay higher taxes in order to pay for damage caused by vandalism.
- Businesses hike up the prices on things you buy to pay for vandalized property.
What can you do to help
- Say “no” to any type of vandalism.
- Start a community clean-up crew at your school or neighborhood. Paint over graffiti or help repair broken property.
- Ask local businesses to donate supplies, such as paint, paintbrushes, or tools to repair things around your neighborhood with your friends.
- Write articles in your school paper about the costs and consequences of vandalism.
- Advise the school principal of the problem.
- Timely removal of vandalism is a great deterrent.
Above information gathered by Manuel Valadez Jr.