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Constituency Statements: Neighbourhood Watch week
Last week was Neighbourhood Watch Week, so I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank all the hardworking and underappreciated volunteers from Neighbourhood Watch for the work that they do in helping to keep our community safe. Neighbourhood Watch was founded in Victoria by a group of concerned citizens who realised that our police alone could not control the rising crime they were facing at that time. Since then, they have grown to include more than 1,300 Neighbourhood Watch areas covering 900,000 households and have become a much valued and respected institution within our community, including my community in Deakin. Within Deakin, both the Whitehorse and Maroondah Neighbourhood Watches include groups of volunteers who do an amazing job in trying to keep our streets safe.
Unfortunately, in Victoria, under our state Labor government, crime is once again on the rise—up by more than 13 per cent. Theft, assault and carjackings are becoming common occurrences, with parts of Melbourne becoming the playground of violent gangs. At the same time, Labor have cut police numbers and indeed have cut funding to Neighbourhood Watch at this critical time. I call on Labor to do the right thing in the midst of this epidemic of attacks on law and order—do the right thing and restore funding to Neighbourhood Watch and allow us to make the streets of Victoria safe again.
Click here to access a PDF copy of the Hansard transcript of this speech.