More than 2,800 reports of graffiti have been received in the last year and it's costing the city $200,000 to clean things up. The Anti-Graffiti Strategy's goal is the overall reduction and fast-as-possible removal of graffiti within the city limits.
It's Not Art; It's Illegal
Graffiti is the marking of private, public or commercial property with spray paint, markers, acid, abrasive tools, etc. to create a "tag." A tag is usually unique to each vandal and many include a vandal's initials, a nickname or favorite word. By having the tag visible to others the vandal receives notoriety within the graffiti subculture.
More than 2,800 reports of graffiti have been received in the last year and it's costing the city $200,000 to clean things up. Graffiti is a crime that is punishable by a fine and/or prison!
The Anti-Graffiti Strategy (T.A.G.S.)
The Anti-Graffiti Strategy or "T.A.G.S." is a comprehensive package of measures to curtail graffiti in the City of Yuma. It includes stepped-up enforcement, greater education and awareness and enhanced partnerships between City departments and other government agencies, businesses, retailers, schools, Neighborhood Watch organizations and other community groups.
The program's goals are the overall reduction and fast-as-possible removal of graffiti within the city limits; the addition of removal and abatement resources for the Yuma Police Department (YPD) and Parks and Recreation; an increase in enforcement; improvement in the way graffiti incidents and statistics are tracked; an increase in successful prosecution of offenders; and an increase in community awareness of graffiti issues.
As a PARENT, What Can I Do?
Graffiti vandals can be as young as 10 years old and may be a well behaved child. They can be straight "A" students, athletes or musicians and they could be in your household. Be on the look out for the following:
- Unusual nicknames for your child or his or her friends.
- Clothing or school supplies with "tags" on them.
- Paint or marker residue on hands or clothing.
- Graffiti paraphernalia in your child's bedroom: graffiti related tapes, DVD's, video games, etc.
- Photos of graffiti on children's digital cameras or their cell phones.
- Friends listed by "tag" or unusual nickname on your child's cell phone.
- Graffiti tools like: markers, spay paint, latex gloves, grinding tools, sandpaper, emery boards, rocks, knives, screwdrivers, etc.
- Package deliveries addressed to your child.
- Missing supplies from your garage or workshop.
Download our pamphlet with more helpful hints and information about how you can identify graffiti vandals.
As a BUSINESS OWNER, What Can I Do?
The business community's partnership and compliance with proposed revised ordinances limiting access to the tools taggers rely on is a key component to the citywide strategy to combat graffiti.
- Do not sell graffiti implements to minors.
- Keep spray paint, markers, etching equipment and other graffiti tools out of reach and in secure or well-watched locations.
- Show your support by displaying signs warning about the penalties of providing minors with these items.
As a MEMBER of the COMMUNITY, What Can I Do?
Graffiti hurts all of us. This is your town and you can help us keep it clean.
- If you see a tagger in action or other vandalism in progress, report the crime; call 911!
- If you have information about taggers or crimes that have already been committed, call the Yuma Police Department at (928) 373-4700 or, if you wish to remain anonymous, call (928) 78-CRIME (782-7463).
- Store the "Graffiti Busters" hot line on your mobile phone: (928) 329-2828.
- When you see graffiti, report it to the "Graffiti Busters"; they'll try to have it cleaned up in less than 24 hours.
- If you clean up graffiti yourself, be sure to report it online. We need to know about it.
For More Information
If you have questions about the City's Graffiti Abatement program or need more information on what you can do, please contact the Yuma Police Department.