It is illegal in Victoria to mark graffiti on property without the owner's consent. In Victoria, state and local governments deal with graffiti through prevention, removal and enforcement.

Reporting graffiti

Call 000 to report graffiti in progress.

If your property is marked by graffiti, report it to your local police station (External link).

If you have information on illegal graffiti offences, contact your local police station or call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. You can provide information to Crime Stoppers without giving your details.

Prevention

Graffiti prevention measures aim to reduce opportunities for offending and encourage ownership and observation of areas by the community as a means of discouraging vandalism.

Reducing the opportunity for graffiti aims to deter graffiti by analysing the ‘risks and rewards’ of graffiti to the offender. By maximising the risks to offenders and minimising the rewards, it is possible to discourage offenders from damaging a particular area.

Graffiti prevention measures councils and communities may consider include:

  • education and diversionary programs to help raise people’s awareness of the impacts of illegal graffiti and the legal and other consequences of engaging in graffiti vandalism
  • support for community groups interested in addressing graffiti, including adopt-a-space and care-for-an-area projects
  • planting trees or other vegetation to make graffiti-prone walls more difficult to access and less attractive to offenders
  • applying anti-graffiti coatings to make removal easier and walls less appealing to offenders
  • creating legal community art programs or initiatives, including installing community murals to deter offenders and improve streetscapes.

Individual communities are in the best position to determine which prevention measures are most suitable to their particular problem. The success of graffiti prevention measures depends on the extent of the graffiti problem as well as the suitability of the solution.

Councils can apply for funding under the Creating Safer Places stream of the Building Safer Communities grant program to incorporate graffiti prevention initiatives in broader urban design projects where graffiti is an identified issue in that location and is impacting on the community’s feelings of safety and usage of the space. Eligible organisations may also consider applying for funding through the Crime Prevention Innovation Fund for funding for projects that aim to strengthen the community’s ability to prevent and manage graffiti vandalism.

Removal

Quick removal tends to discourage further attacks. Graffiti is also usually easier to remove soon after it is marked. The remove graffiti page provides further information on available resources to help you remove graffiti.

Graffiti Removal Program

Some councils partner with the Graffiti Removal Program (External link) where supervised teams of offenders on community orders clean-up graffiti hotspots.

As part of the Graffiti Removal Program, Community Correctional Services partners with program partners including local councils, Public Transport Victoria, Department of Health and Human Services (Housing Services) and VicRoads to remove graffiti across metropolitan Melbourne and in major regional centres.

Teams of supervised offenders use purpose-built trailers to clean-up graffiti from vandalised state and local government property, including road and rail assets, community areas and private property.

The Graffiti Removal Program allows offenders to make reparation for their crimes and supports offender rehabilitation by providing work-related skills to help increase employment opportunities.

For enquiries regarding the Graffiti Removal Program, email corrections@justice.vic.gov.au (External link).

Enforcement

The Victorian Graffiti Prevention Act 2007 creates a range of graffiti-related offences, gives police powers to investigate suspected graffiti offences and gives councils powers to remove graffiti from private property.

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