Charity counts vandals cost

Chloe FraserSound Telegraph
Charity Collection bins located on Elanora drive in Cooloongup are regularly being raided and trashed.
Camera IconCharity Collection bins located on Elanora drive in Cooloongup are regularly being raided and trashed. Credit: Danny Joyce

A rise in the number of charity collection bins being trashed in the Rockingham area could put employment for people with disabilities at risk, according to a leading charity.

Bins in Rockingham, Safety Bay and Cooloongup have been vandalised, with piles of donations strewn along road verges.

Good Samaritan Industries divisional manager of commercial services Debbie Cameron said charities relied on donations to stock retail stores and provide employment for people with disabilities.

She said the clean-up of trashed sites came at a high cost for charities.

“Charity bins are the life-blood for charities like ours,” she said.

“When people trash them it really takes away our ability to be able to offer employment opportunities for people with disabilities.”

Residents expressed disgruntlement on social media about the destruction and called for the bins to be moved to areas which could be “monitored more regularly”.

Cooloongup resident Michelle Windram told the Sound Telegraph she was disappointed by the vandalism, which left her neighbourhood looking like a “dump”.

“It’s a real problem,” she said.

“There isn’t a day that they are not emptied or tipped over,” she said.

“The (charities) do try to get onto it as soon as they can, but it’s just that eyesore until they do.”

Resident Danny Joyce, who has lived in the area for about 25 years, said the bins were located in an “isolated corner” and would be better relocated to a shopping centre carpark or somewhere “well lit”.

Resident Caroline Hume said it was “a shame” to see the bins frequently being vandalised.

“The money the charities lose could be going towards helping others in need,” she said.

“My thought is that maybe the bins need to be placed near where there are cameras.”

Ms Cameron said Good Samaritan Industries was undertaking a CCTV trial of some bins, but encouraged people to drop donations directly to stores.

The City of Rockingham Mayor Barry Sammels said while the relevant charities emptied the bins about three times a week, the City’s LitterBusters team also inspected locations on the weekends.

“Depending on the issue reported, a Litterbusters team will respond as an immediate course of action and liaise with the relevant charity to find a solution,” he said.

Mr Sammels said the City could not move the bins or install CCTV cameras to monitor the bins because they were not City-owned assets.

According to the City, Elanora Drive in Cooloongup and Rand Avenue in Waikiki are the most commonly reported collection points.

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