Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Behind locked doors - the deadly epidemic of fear

Behind locked doors - the deadly epidemic of fear - National -

'Most people keep to themselves here because of the crime. A lot are elderly and are frightened to go out. They don't even want to know if their neighbour has died, let alone get to know them,' he said.

The Redfern Police Commander, Superintendent Catherine Burn, said Mr Newman's death was 'sad and tragic' but the circumstances were inevitable when elderly people lived alone."

Oh, well, if it was inevitable, then there's nothing to be done, is there? Given the fear of crime that exists in Waterloo/Redfern, surely the best thing that the government could do is gradually bring in a mix of new arrivals from all backgrounds, rather than letting their friends the developers build a pile of yuppy box fortresses with steel bars to the street, creating a clear dichotomy of 2 extremes of class in the area: public housing and yuppies desperate to meet their inflated rents. Maybe everyone would relax a little more if a large number of 'affordable' residences were built and the more decent middle classes could start moving in and altering the character of the neighbourhood.

So, the state will begrudgingly give you supported accommodation if you're on a low income - but the price you will pay will be living in a state-created ghetto, living a life of fear from crime in the area, no matter how decent you are. That's the limit of creativity and imagination from the government, I'm afraid.

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