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Free Train Ticket Proposal

Young People in Northbridge Policy - Diversion Proposal

In short...

The aim of this proposal is to address the diversionary aspect of the policy document, as there are sufficient resources and processes allocated to the management of the removal of young people is need of assistance, or who are offending, but there appears to be insufficient
incentives available to encourage young people to leave the area of their own free will.

As a means of providing young people with incentive to make appropriate use of the Northbridge area, it is proposed that a trial period be undertaken that would involve the introduction of ‘free trains’ at appropriate times. The aim of the proposal would be as follows:

  • Free trains could be provided for a certain time frame that it deemed to be an appropriate time for young people to be leaving the Northbridge area. It is suggested that this initially be trains leaving Perth between the 10.00pm and Midnight on Thursday, Friday and

  • Saturday nights.

  • The ability to access free trains would enhance the effectiveness of the role of Outreach Workers, and agencies such as the Noongar Patrol, as they would be able to discuss this service with young people and escort them to link with the trains.

  • The provision of free trains provides an acknowledgment of the appropriate times to be leaving the Northbridge area, and shows a further commitment from the government to assist young people in this process. It removes the excuse of not having sufficient funds to purchase a ticket, and also removes the prospect of young people receiving fines and accumulating debt when trying to get home.

  • It provides young people with a choice on the night. They are able to make decisions about the appropriateness of when to leave the area, and the possible consequences of choosing they remain, ie possible police intervention.


 

Full document (link)

Community views (link)

With the help of Mission Australia's State Manager WA at the time, Anne Russell-Brown, I hired out a community room in Northbridge and held a meeting with various stakeholders:

  • Department of Premier and Cabinet,

  • Juvenile Aide Group (WA Police)

  • Nyoongar Patrol,

  • Public Transport Authority,

  • Transit Guards,

  • Youth workers,

  • WA Police (Commissioned officers)

The meeting didn't go all to plan due to my lack of experience but Anne Russell-Brown was central to the meeting being as successful as could be expected. Some of the comments from the night were included in the Department of the Premier and Cabinet's Executive Director Peter Frizzell's letter below.