How can we tackle an on-going problem we have with graffiti?

Q

How can we tackle an on-going problem we have with graffiti?

A

Graffiti has, over the last few years, in some quarters at least, been elevated to an art form. However, for facilities managers (FMs) whose buildings have become the regular target for graffiti, art is the furthest thing from their minds. Indeed, graffiti in London alone costs an estimated £100 million a year to deal with. Local authorities have some powers to deal with graffiti with the Antisocial Behaviour Act 2003, but for FMs dealing with graffiti on a daily basis, more proactive action is usually required.

The education sector is often singled out as suffering acutely from problems with its environment, including graffiti. Indeed, in its report One More Broken Window, the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers stated: “The quality of the physical environment affects individual behaviour and behaviour within and in relation to schools. Where local physical environments are allowed to become dirty, litter-strewn and covered in graffiti, this is likely to give rise to the perception that: ‘No one else really cares about this area, so why should I?’ or ‘That’s a really run-down area; I wouldn’t want to go there’.” FMs in the educational sector are all too aware of what can be acute issues regarding graffiti.

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