Freo's View

CONFUSION ABOUT COMMUNITY SAFETY

 

There appears to have been a bit of miscommunication this morning when Fremantle traders were invited to a Community Safety Briefing, but when yet another speaker spoke about future social and housing solutions for homeless people, some in the public gallery became irate and wanted to express their concerns about antisocial behaviour, violence, shoplifting and begging. They were not very interested to hear about long term solutions, when they want immediate action.

One Market Street shopkeeper expressed that she feared she might have to stop trading because of the issues and that she herself might end up on the street, while others questioned the slow response time of police and Fremantle community safety officers, and asked if the number of officers dealing with these issues is adequate.

Mayor Brad Pettitt had said before the public interruption that one of the key issues was working together, while Minister Simone McGurk said a lot of resources were put in by Police in Fremantle and Perth CBD with a no tolerance approach to antisocial behaviour.

The state government were spending hundreds of millions of dollars on social housing and housing for homeless facilities, using the best evidence from around Australia and the world as a cornerstone for the government policy. It was important to provide permanent, instead of transitional, housing and that had very good outcomes.

The Senior Sergeant in charge of Fremantle police said that Fremantle and Perth CBD were unique but that total crime reported since July last year was down by 5.6%, however retail theft was up by 22%.

The best crime prevention is police visibility, so there were more cops on the beat and on bikes and spread all over the day.

There were other speakers, and some who were there to speak but never got to it, so there is a lot of scope for the City to do better here and do a very specific safety forum for retailers, addressing the specific issues and trying to find specific solutions for the short and long term. Trying to cover everything, as was the case this morning, did not work and left traders frustrated.

Roel Loopers

CONTROVERSIAL WEST END BACKPACKERS TO CLOSE

Posted in accommodation, anti-social, backpackers, city of fremantle, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on February 11, 2020

 

hostel

 

If the rumours in Freo backpacker circles are correct, the residents and businesses in the West End will get respite soon when the Fremantle Beach Backpackers, above Bar Orient in historic High Street, will be forced to close its doors by the end of this month.

For years there have been complaints about antisocial behaviour, noise, violence, and alleged drug dealing in and around the hostel, and that is not acceptable.

The building was bought by Twiggy Forrest’s Minderoo Group last year and it is not known yet what their plans are for the building.

It might well be that the Bar Orient owner, who is not connected with the hostel, will put all his eggs in one basket when he opens the new Freo Doctor cafe, bar, restaurant and function centre in the new City of Fremantle Civic Centre by the end of the year, so Bar Orient might also have a short lifespan from here on. If that was to be the case it would be fantastic if the building were to become a boutique hotel, as that would certainly help to activate the West End in the evenings.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE POLICE ON THE BEAT

Posted in anti-social, city of fremantle, crime, law&order, police, Uncategorized by freoview on October 2, 2019

 

Important FREMANTLE POLICE message on Twitter:

Operation Swanfield. Providing increased bike/foot patrols of Fremantle CBD area. Assisting local retailers with crime prevention and anti-social behaviour.

 

Roel Loopers

PEE IS NOT AN ICECREAM FLAVOUR

Posted in anti-social, city of fremantle, food, Uncategorized by freoview on April 5, 2019

 

 

There are all sorts of crazy new ice cream flavours, from fish&chips to peanut butter, but urine is not one of them as this Fremantle icecream shop in the Piazza clearly states.

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE WORKING ON BETTER COMMUNITY SAFETY AND CRIME PREVENTION

 

safety

 

Fremantle residents, businesses and visitors to Freo are being asked for their input on the City of Fremantle’s new Community Safety and Crime Prevention Plan.

The development of the new plan is being overseen by the Community Safety Reference Group, which includes both the City of Fremantle and WA Police.

The Community Safety Plan will be guided by the feedback received during stakeholder and community engagement, and will set out clear timelines, targets and responsibilities for addressing community safety issues.

Police statistics show that crime in Fremantle is relatively low, but like all major centres there are issues and quite a few complaints about crime and safety on social media.

Fremantle Council believes that it will be really valuable for people to let them know what their recent experiences in Fremantle have been like – both good and bad – so that the City and WA Police know what’s working well and what areas they need to focus on in the new plan.

People can visit the City’s My Say Freo website to share their thoughts in a short survey and access information about current community safety initiatives.

They can also use an interactive map to pin point the places in Fremantle they like to visit and also the places where they feel uncomfortable or unsafe.

The City of Fremantle’s Community Safety Team patrols the city centre and surrounding suburbs from 7am-2am on Wednesday-Saturday, and from 7am-9pm on Sunday-Tuesday.

Fremantle is also one of just three local governments in Western Australia to have a CCTV network that is monitored in real time.

For more information and to complete the Community Safety survey visit the Community Safety and Crime Prevention Plan page on the My Say Freo website.

The survey closes on 12 April.

Roel Loopers

COPS ON THE BEAT NOT MEDIA BEAT UP IS WHAT FREMANTLE NEEDS

 

While the concerns of the Fremantle retailers about antisocial behavior, violence and shoplifting are genuine and need to be much better attacked by WA Police, it is not at all helpful for their businesses to get a silly tabloid headline such as “Is Fremantle On Its Knees?” on Channel 7 Today Tonight and negative articles on line in the West Australian and Perth Now/Sunday Times.

Big negative headlines in the media will no doubt have an impact on visitors and shoppers and while retailers claim shoppers stay away from Fremantle because they don’t feel safe, it is more likely they will stay away because of the negativity in mainstream and on social media.

The City of Fremantle does extremely well when one considers all the CCTV around town and the Community Safety officers patrolling the streets daily from early till late, but at the end it is the State Government that will need to demand from the Police Commissioner that we will get a regular and constant number of officers on foot, on bike and in cars in Fremantle, and not just for a few weeks after bad press.

Bad press is not helping Fremantle! We have read for years that parking supposedly was an issue, but it wasn’t really, and we had a former CEO of the Chamber of Commerce who loved to be photographed in front of vacant shops complaining that retail was declining-as it did everywhere else-and now we have the outrage about homeless people, vagrants, foul language, abuse, etc.

I do totally get the frustration of those who have to deal with this shit daily and are victims of it, in and in front of their shops, but it is much better to put pressure on the Police Commissioner, the Minister for Police and the Premier of this state to let them know that it is not good enough, no matter that incidents such as we have in Fremantle also regularly occur in Cockburn, Midland, Perth, Northbridge, etc.

Our traders, shoppers, tourists, residents, workers and everyone who comes into Freo deserve to have a good time. Feeling unsafe might just be a perception for many, but that makes it a reality for them and that needs to be stopped. Now! We want and need more police on the beat each and every day and indefinitely to prevent all the unacceptable and unlawful incidents happening, not to write reports after the event!

Roel Loopers

FREO’S WEST END DRUG WORRIES

Posted in anti-social, city of fremantle, crime, law&order, local government, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on December 20, 2018

 

orient

 

Local residents and business owners in the area of High and Henry streets in Fremantle’s historic West End are fed up with anti-social behaviour and drug dealing, and the lack of decisive action by the authorities.

Photos and videos taken by the locals show that drug dealing is going on many times a day and that allegedly also affects the backpackers hostel above Bar Orient.

There have been meetings with Fremantle Police, the City of Fremantle safety rangers, Councillors and affected business owners and residents, but there is no relief from the steady stream of itinerants playing up in the area.

The problems near the backpackers on the corner of Henry and High streets have been going on for years, so Fremantle Council will need to have some serious thoughts about how it can improve the amenity for those who get all the negative impact from drug users and dealers.

There is a visual increase in the number of homeless people in Fremantle over the last few months, as often happens during the summer months, and when they roam around in groups they become intimidating.

Up at the Roundhouse homeless people are making the public toilets their day destination and hang out inside, so many tourists are not comfortable using the toilets.

The rangers mainly show up at Arthur’s Head early in the morning to evict people from the verandahs of the cottages, but rarely come up to patrol the area later in the day any more, so that also needs to improve.

Homelessness is a sad reality in Australia and so is the increase in drug use, but law abiding citizens should feel safe on the streets of our cities, and so should our overseas and interstate visitors.

Roel Loopers

ANTI SOCIAL FREO WEST END BACKPACKERS

Posted in anti-social, backpackers, city of fremantle, law&order, tourism by freoview on March 22, 2017

 

Residents in Fremantle’s West End in High and Henry streets are very concerned about the Fremantle Beach Backpackers hostel above the Orient Hotel.

They claim excessive noise from parties, drug dealing and drug taking, drunks, urination and overflowing rubbish bins.

The residents have a meeting with Fremantle security officers and police this afternoon and will also attend the BID security event for the East End tomorrow evening.

They claim people and university students, especially women no longer feel safe in the area and that the problems are 24/7 but the police station in High Street only has one receptionist officer at night and move-on notices do very little to stop the problems.

Anti-social behaviour has been an ongoing problem in Fremantle for many years and WA Police simply does not do enough to control it, and the City’s security officers can’t be everywhere.

Fremantle is the second highest destination in Western Australia for international tourists and the historic West End is one of the main attractions, so the Fremantle Beach Backpackers management need to be told to stop the noisy parties, drunks and drug use and dealing. It’s not on, so close them down if they can’t comply!

We all want our visitors to Fremantle, including backpackers, to have a great time, but they need to show respect for the community they are temporarily guests in.

Roel Loopers

ANOTHER STABBING IN FREMANTLE

Posted in alcohol, anti-social, city of fremantle, law&order, police, violence by freoview on December 1, 2016

It is a crying shame that there has been another stabbing in Fremantle, this time a 17-year-old boy was stabbed just before midnight in front of a kebab shop on the Cappuccino Strip last night. Earlier this week a man who had been stabbed near the railway station died, and reports of violence in the inner city are damaging Fremantle’s reputation as a family friendly city.

My observations when walking through the CBD daily is that at daytime there is not enough police on the beat but there is good visual presence of CoF security officers, however the latter only work till early in the evening and not at night so the cops need to increase their foot patrols at night.

Violence and anti social behaviour is not something council can fix, but the City of Fremantle needs to start looking at rigorously implementing its alcohol policy and not adding more fuel to the fire by allowing more alcohol outlets.

I am not sure that I like the big billboard on Stirling Highway at all that proudly announces that Bathers Beach is the first beach in Australia where one can drink alcohol on the beach. It’s not the sort of reputation Fremantle needs.

Roel Loopers

HAPPY TO LIVE IN FREO WHERE LISA LOOKS AFTER US

Posted in anti-social, city of fremantle, violence by freoview on March 10, 2016

I need to share an observation I made that will not please all those Fremantle blasters who believe nothing is right in our city and that Freo attracts undesirable people while in councils like the City of Perth it is all honky dory.

Going to a photo shoot I took the train to Perth and had coffee and read the paper at Forrest Place for an hour from 9.30 this morning. It basically was awful! There was a lot of shouting, people looking really angry, a man dressed only in jocks waving a bed sheet in the air while falling over his feet, a man on crutches wearing a full face mask, people pointing the bird at people relaxing on benches. I felt uncomfortable and kept looking over my shoulder because there was aggression in the air.

I just wanted to point out with this short message that the grass is not always greener on the other side and that other councils have similar problems as Fremantle has. These are not problems created by certain councils or certain elected members, but issues that our society has created because we are not dealing very well with them.

I was happy to hop back on the train after the shoot and even happier when I walked through Pioneer Park where City of Fremantle security officer Lisa had a smoko with a colleague. I told her I am lucky to live in a city where Lisa looks after me. ; > )

Roel Loopers

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