City Of Kingston, Correctional Service Of Canada Partner For Clean Up
Correctional Service of Canada and the City of Kingston have been working together on a pilot project for graffiti removal that involves offenders from Pittsburgh Institution participating in a work release program.
Through the 2011 summer season, two offenders have been assigned part time to attend to locations on public property to remove graffiti tags and assist the City in their clean up initiative. 69 locations have been visited by the volunteer work crews in the last three months.
“This is a positive partnership that provides a work release opportunity for offenders while participating in community service activities”, said Lori MacDonald, Acting Regional Deputy Commissioner. “It has been very beneficial for both of our organizations.”
“Graffiti is a problem in many municipalities and unfortunately Kingston is no different from the rest,” commented Mayor Mark Gerretsen. “We have seen early success from this pilot project for several reasons. Graffiti tags have been removed from public spaces quickly and consistently across our historic community, the volunteer offenders are providing a valuable community service which helps beautify our city but also assists their rehabilitation, and to boot, all of this work is done at no additional cost to our local taxpayers.”
“Twice a week, our Public Works Department provides the painting supplies and a list of graffiti tag locations that require attention,” said Damon Wells, Director of Public Works for the City of Kingston. “The list is compiled through staff observations and requests through our Customer Service representatives. This co-operative program addresses graffiti on a consistent, regular and timely basis. It has been successful in helping to keep our parks and roadsides clear of graffiti. We hope to see this mutually-beneficial partnership to continue in future years.”
Weather permitting, the graffiti removal project will continue until the end of October and recommence in the spring of 2012.
Release source: City of Kingston | Photo (graffiti in London): Benjamin D. Esham