The Minister for Justice, Equality & Law Reform Mr. Brian
Lenihan T.D. - along with his colleague, the Minister for
the Environment, Heritage & Local Government, Mr. John Gormley
T.D. - have launched the Community Graffiti Reduction Programme
- a new national programme to support local communities to
Under this programme, a broad approach is being taken to
tackle graffiti and funding will be available for a wide range
of initiatives to assist local communities to remove graffiti
and to carry out activities which can assist in the long-term
reduction in incidence of graffiti in their areas.
Speaking at the launch, Minister Lenihan said - "This
scheme was structured in such a way that it will facilitate
communities taking the broadest approach to tackling graffiti
in their areas, in the way they feel will work best. Pobal
is best placed to administer the scheme as is has demonstrated
a high degree of commitment to supporting communities in their
work to overcome disadvantage and to ensuring that communities
get best value from the funding available to them."
Minister Gormley welcomed the new cross-departmental initiative
and said that he is fully aware of the major blight on communities,
which graffiti vandals cause. The Minister said - "I
encourage local groups to apply for funding under this new
graffiti reduction programme, which seeks to deal with graffiti
both in the short-term - through cleansing and support for
businesses - and in the long-term - by changing peoples' behaviour
through education and raising awareness."
A budget of €3.75 million is available for the programme
during 2008. The first set of funds to be allocated will be
ring-fenced to RAPID (Revitalising Areas through Planning,
Investment and Development) communities, which are disadvantaged
areas prioritised by Government for a range of funding opportunities.
Application forms will be sent to RAPID areas later this month.
Minister Lenihan added - "Graffiti is, at best, an irritant
and at worst outright vandalism. It is regrettably found across
a broad range of areas." Minister Gormley, agreeing that
the proliferation of graffiti in certain areas was deplorable,
said - "The appearance of a community is a key feature
in encouraging social and economic activity and in identifying
it as a desirable place to live, work and do business in.
First impressions do count and an ongoing cooperative effort
is required between the towns-people, the business community
and local groups - such as the RAPID teams and the local authorities
- to ensure that the town is well presented."
The Programme, which is supported by the Department of Justice,
Equality and Law Reform, the Department of Environment, Heritage
and Local Government and the Department of Community, Rural
and Gaeltacht Affairs, will be managed, co-ordinated and delivered
The Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform has worked
with Pobal for a number of years on the delivery of a range
of successful programmes to benefit communities - including
the Community CCTV programme, the Enhancing Disabilities Services
Project and the Equality for Women Measures.
All areas of the country are eligible to apply for subsequent
sets of funds, with applications being accepted from May 2008.
Application forms will be issued in March.
The Community Graffiti Reduction Programme is a new national
initiative following on from a pilot project carried out by
the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform. It aims
- To support an immediate reduction in the extent and impact
of graffiti within the communities who participate in the
- To develop local mechanisms within these communities to
support the long-term reduction of incidences of graffiti.
In 2008, up to €3.75 million is being made available
to fund projects. Local groups (including tidy towns groups)
or consortia of groups and state agencies - with at
least three years experience of working on environmental and
community safety issues - are eligible to apply for funding.
The programme will fund the following range of activities
- Graffiti removal - Practical identification and removal
of any graffiti within a public space, or on private property
which is visible from a public space.
- Identification of improved landscape design. This will
include work with Local Authorities, businesses or others
to identify methods to reduce the targeting of individual
sites for graffiti and the impact of graffiti on these sites
by the improvement of planting, fencing and other arrangements.
- Targeted initiatives (including training initiatives)
to work with young adult offenders or young adults at risk
to include them in anti-graffiti activities.
- Educational initiatives on graffiti with broad groups
of young people within the targeted area.
This may include work with youth groups, sporting groups,
clubs, schools, etc. to educate children on the effects
and impact of graffiti on the quality of life of local communities,
initiatives to change young people's perceptions of graffiti,
or work to broaden the understanding of young people of
graffiti as an issue of environmental degradation.
- Supporting businesses in self-help to stop or remove graffiti.
As part of a wider initiative, funds can be made available
to supply business with graffiti cleaning kits, or to offer
advice and support on preventative anti-graffiti measures.
- Community arts projects to divert young people from destructive
graffiti. These can include collaborative work with groups
of children and young people on arts projects and on the
creation of outdoor and publicly visible arts projects,
which offer outlets for artistic creation without the negative
effects of graffiti.
Funding Phases and Mechanisms
Funding will be allocated in two phases. The first phase,
Scheme A, will be confined to RAPID (Revitalising Areas through
Planning, Investment and Development) areas only. The second
phase, Scheme B, will be available nationally.
Under Scheme A, eligible groups may access an immediate budget
(€30,000) to begin graffiti removal activities. This
will be followed by the national Scheme B which will support
longer-term and more varied actions to reduce and control
graffiti. Under scheme B, grants of between €50,000 and
€150,000 are available. Scheme B will commence in May