WHAT IS GRAFFITI?
WHAT IS GRAFFITI?
Graffiti is an act of vandalism where public or private property is defaced by painting, drawing, writing, etching or carving without the property owner’s permission.
Graffiti vandals use a variety of materials such as spray paint, crayons and permanent ink to deface property. Hobby knives and razor blades are used to cause permanent damage to glass and other surfaces.
WHERE DOES GRAFFITI COMMONLY OCCUR?
Graffiti can occur anywhere, however some of the more popular targets include:
• Public and private buildings
• Recreational facilities
• Newspaper boxes
• Municipal street furniture
• Utility boxes
• Parks and playgrounds
• Bridges and overpasses
• Public transit property & vehicles
• Canada Post mail boxes & property
HOW DOES GRAFFITI AFFECT THE COMMUNITY?
• Increased taxes to fund clean-up programs. The City of Mississauga spends a significant amount of money on property repair, clean- up and restoration due to graffiti vandalism.
• Local property values may decrease
• Heightened fear of crime in the community
• Weakens residents and visitors sense of security and safety
• Promotes an undesirable image of our city to visitors
• When witnessing suspicious behaviour or graffiti on City of Mississauga property, call Corporate Security immediately at (905) 896-5040.
• If the suspicious behaviour or graffiti is observed on private property, call the Peel Regional Police immediately at 905-453-3311 (non emergency line).
• Provide Corporate Security/Police with descriptions of the suspects, and their vehicle, including the make, model, colour and licence plate number.
• In situations where the perpetrator is not present, you can report graffiti by contacting the City's 311 call centre or completing an online report which is located at http://www5.mississauga.ca/CORPSVCS/enforce/bylaw/graffiti_form.htm
WHAT KIND OF INITIATIVES HAS THE CITY OF MISSISSAUGA TAKEN TO COMBAT GRAFFITI?
• The formation of the Integrated Municipal Enforcement Team (I.M.E.T.). I.M.E.T. is made up of staff from Corporate Security, Enforcement Division, Councillor’s Offices, Peel Regional Police, Peel Public Health and AGCO. The members of I.M.E.T. meet monthly to discuss issues that arise in the community. Once an issue has been identified, the members of I.M.E.T. discuss and recommend solutions.
• Safe City Mississauga runs a neighbourhood watch program which encourages residents to report vandalism and other crimes in progress. Safe City also runs “Counter-Act”, an anti-graffiti committee made up of city staff, some Councillors, representatives from the corporate community, school boards and the Police.
• Professional murals have been painted in areas that are high risk for graffiti (See example below).
WHAT IS CORPORATE SECURITY’S ROLE?
In 2008, Corporate Security established a central reporting system for graffiti in the City of Mississauga, known as The Graffiti Project. The goal of the Graffiti Project is to create a comprehensive plan to address graffiti in a coordinated, citywide effort through prevention, intervention, and enforcement. It has been proven that public education and community involvement have a direct impact on reducing graffiti within a community. Since 2008, Peel Regional Police have laid over 100 charges as a direct result of Corporate Security’s reporting system.