Marge's Perth Street Doctor Nurse Comment
"The curfew is a difficult problem."
Marge spent approximately eight years working as a nurse for the Perth Street Doctor, since its inception in 2001. Her vibrant personality, tireless energy, obvious passion, caring nature and strong counselling skills made her a favourite with most, if not all people who came to the van to be seen or just to socialise at this popular meeting place.
Young people may not have a safe place to go home to and putting young people onto the train may not be a good idea.
"The welfare agencies are working to solve the problem but it doesn’t work all the time."
I don’t know what to do with young kids unless they're supervised by an agency but then what do you do in the morning? Give them a good home life some how. Sure, for a group of them, it will work.
You get about 40 kids who come out over a weekend. When they first started the curfew, they were just taking anyone off the streets but then they found they had too many to work with.
Now they just place 10 kids into the JAG* office at one time. If they can’t find responsible adults, then DCD* and the welfare services are left with them.
Maybe home is what they’re running away from. Some come in with money but they don’t have any to go home with.
Most nights until around 2010, the Perth Street Doctor was located on Wellington Street near the entrance of the Perth Train Station.
* JAG: Juvenile Aide Group - Western Australia Police Service unit dealing with juveniles unaccompanied by a responsible adult, particularly in the Northbridge vicinity late at night.
Interventions are usually due to welfare concerns as well as diverting juveniles from engaging in offending behaviours, particularly to avoid potential court processes.
* DCD: Department of Community Development - formed on 1 July 2001 as the key organisation responsible for child welfare in Western Australia.
On 1 July 2007, it was divided into two: Department for Communities and the Department for Child Protection (DCP), the latter being responsible for child welfare, as the name states.