Youth Community Safety Discussions Ongoing

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Representatives and leaders from local community groups and organizations met to discuss youth community safety Feb. 2 at Jasmine Greens in the Peninsula Recreation Precinct.

State MP for Gosford Liesl Tesch, MP for Robertson, Lucy Wicks and Jessica Bradbury of the Brisbane Water Local Area Command met with representatives from Umina United, Umina Community Group, Umina Markets, Coastal Community Youth Services and the RYSS Indigenous Youth Justice Support Team.

Discussions are continuing but the meeting was described as “constructive”.

Tesch said the meeting was a positive step in addressing the need for more support services for young people on the peninsula to address anti-social behavior.

“Our community has concerns about the antisocial behavior that has really come to a boil because of COVID,” Tesch said.

“We want local community organisations, police and governments at all levels to recognize that this is a symptom of great structural inequalities in our community, and we need to come together to address these issues head on.”

Tesch said youth in the community have been hit hard by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“COVID has really stolen so many things from our young people,” Tesch said.

“Their upbringing was extremely disrupted, they lost their ability to play competitive sport and they weren’t able to meet friends or see really important family members.

“Many of these children have lost so many rites of passage that are so important to understanding your role in our community and how we should all respect and support each other.

“Many of our young people are missing out on growing experiences that we have all had and take for granted.”

Maisy Rae

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