The State Government needs to urgently address overcrowding in social housing across the regions, including Carnarvon which is contributing to anti-social behaviour spiralling out of control.
Ms Beard said young people were choosing to wander the streets instead of going home resulting in anti-social behaviour and an unprecedented crime wave sweeping across some of the towns.
“Just one example is where the State Government has turned its back on Carnarvon, doing little to repair 43 social housing properties which are vacant and not replacing properties scheduled for demolition,” Ms Beard said.
“Over-crowding is a significant contributor to the high levels of anti-social behaviour and disfunction in Carnarvon with young people not wanting to go home and instead walking the streets.
“Couple this with inadequate resources and services on the ground from stretched departments, such as child protection and mental health. The people of places like Carnarvon, Meekatharra and Mt Magnet are being subjected to anti-social behaviour and daily crime with residents and local businesses counting the costs of being broken into time and time again.
“As a local business owner, I am all too familiar with dealing with the distress and cost of this ongoing crime wave, not to mention the reputational damage as the result of a few doing the wrong thing.
“Given the state-wide rental vacancy rate is just above one percent, to have nearly 14 per cent of Carnarvon’s public housing stock not available is an absolute disgrace.
“The government must act swiftly to ensure as many families as possible across our regions are housed as soon as possible and answer the call for a special taskforce to review and address these complex issues holistically.
We can’t keep doing what we are doing – we need change and reform.”
PHOTO: Hon Mia Davies MLA, Leader of The Nationals WA and Merome Beard outside a ruined home in Carnarvon.