Key Messages on Graffiti Vandalism

The WA Police Force Graffiti Team recommends that state and local government deliver clear and united messages to address graffiti vandalism. Aligning ourselves to the state's Graffiti Vandalism Strategy 2019-2021 is essential to ensure key messages are delivered consistently. The WA Police Force Graffiti Team has developed some clear guidelines on messages that support the strategy.

The vision of the Graffiti Vandalism Strategy Western Australia 2019-2021  is:

To reduce graffiti vandalism to contribute to safer Western Australian communities.

The Goals of the Strategy are:

  1. Promote Partnerships
  2. Reporting and Removing Graffiti Vandalism
  3. Prevention and Policing Graffiti Vandalism

The cost of removing graffiti vandalism is significant

  • It has been estimated that each year it costs the State about $25 million to clean up graffiti.
  • Graffiti damages community pride, devalues property and can, if left unchecked, act as a signal to would-be criminals that residents don’t care what happens in their neighbourhood.
  • All levels of government and the community must work together to stamp out graffiti vandalism.
  • Graffiti has a significant negative impact on the community – it increases the community’s perception of crime, reduces community pride and displaces funds which could be spent elsewhere.

Report Graffiti

  • Report graffiti at or on the Goodbye Graffiti Hotline on 1800 44 22 55 – councils may prefer to use their own reporting procedures here.
  • Contact Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000 if you have any information which may assist with identifying graffiti offenders – monetary rewards are offered if your information leads to the arrest or apprehension of an offender.

Remove graffiti

  • Rapid removal of graffiti is recognised as ‘best practice’ in graffiti reduction.
  • Rapid removal takes away the thrill vandals get in seeing their graffiti vandalism on display.

 Prevent Graffiti

  • Through specific design of homes and businesses we can decrease the opportunities for graffiti vandals to commit offences – Designing out Crime or Crime Prevention through Environment Design principles can be applied, see Prevent Graffiti - Goodbye Graffiti for more information.

Graffiti vandalism and the law

  • Graffiti Vandalism is illegal and police are now taking a tougher approach in targeting offenders.
  • It is illegal to sell spray paint and certain marker pens to any person under 18 years of age.
  • Graffiti vandalism is a crime that can lead to more serious offending.
  • Legislation sends a clear message about community expectations and standards.

Difference between Graffiti vandalism and Urban Art

  • Graffiti or graffiti vandalism refers to the illegal activity of defacing private and/or public property without the consent of the property owner.
  • Urban art refers to legal work, where permission to mark a surface has been granted by the owner of the property.

Further Information on reporting on graffiti vandalism can be found in our Media Guidelines.