Region cries out for solution to growing crime
THERE'S no silver bullet to fix the crime problems facing South Grafton residents, warns Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis.
"I've met with a number of people over the last week to talk about the way things have deteriorated in South Grafton," Mr Gulaptis said.
"The PCYC is not the answer - it may help, but it's not the answer.
"There's a wider problem of housing, health, lack of jobs which needs to be addressed.
"We need a holistic approach rather than just addressing the symptoms."
Pointing to community-run organisations like Camellia Cottage in South Grafton, Mr Gulaptis said this type of initiative was the type of whole of community approach that had the potential to work towards a solution.
"I've been out to Camellia Cottage and it's a great example of a community that works hard to solve the problems within the community," he said.
"I fear if we don't take a holistic approach to the fundamental basics, that is the wider problem of housing, health, education, lack of jobs ... parenting skills.
"We need a few champions and we need to look at the model of Camellia Cottage."
Mr Gulaptis also highlighted the success of the midnight basketball program which returned last night and will run over a six-week period.
"It keeps kids off the street; they get a feed, here a story, and gain respect.
"It's been a very successful program - we should keep doing things that are working well and midnight basketball works."
On Friday Mr Gulaptis held a special meeting with the Premier's Department to look for additional resources for the South Grafton community.