Council keen to make Byron a safer community

BYRON Shire Council are developing a new crime prevention plan called the Safer Community Compact, improving community safety and reducing crime, and making the Byron Shire an even safer place to live, work and visit.

However, more state government funding is required to keep up the good work.

Mayor Simon Richardson says he's passionate about creating and maintaining safe places in the Shire so that everyone can enjoy the magnificent and diverse place we live.

"So far we've helped facilitate or trialled a whole range of safety measures that you see in Byron now; night buses, better lighting, the 'What are you doing to yourself?' campaign, CCTV and the hugely successful community response to previous NYE problems with our awesome Soul Street and First Sun events," Cr Richardson said.

"Council also supports some of the other fantastic local initiatives like the Schoolies Hub and Street Cruise.

"The Masterplan is also part of that big picture vision for making Byron safer and more user friendly- both during the day and at night.

"These were community driven initiatives and key stakeholders were included in the development of these plans, including residents within the local Last Drinks group and liquor accord.

"We need to make sure we have the funding to continue implementing strategies that reduce violence and alcohol related assaults and reclaim the centre of Byron as a dynamic, family friendly, diverse and engaging place - a place that is not shut down and filled with negative activity, but is instead, open to great, respectful activity."

Council are currently consulting with key stakeholders such as Police and other emergency service providers, business groups and organisations that respond to victims of crime.

The fact sheet is available on the website

It outlines in more detail several initiatives from the previous three years from both Council and the community.

"This plan will allow Council to apply for grant funding over the next three years for community safety and crime prevention projects," Cr Richardson said.

"Community safety is more effective when done collaboratively, using a combination of measures that are tailored to local circumstances.

"The key message here is that the incidence of crime in Byron Bay is gradually reducing and we really need State Government funding to keep building on these fantastic initiatives that will ultimately benefit everyone in the community."

If you wish to provide input or discuss safety initiatives, please contact Joanne McMurtry, Community Project Officer on email by phone 6626 7316.