Late night transport service curbs intoxication-fuelled violence
The current issues around binge drinking and violence are making the headlines daily, and yes we need to think of creative solutions to this issue. At Weave, we worry about mandatory sentencing for street violence, as evidence would suggest that mandatory sentences don’t change behaviour. We do know that community initiatives such as our Streetbeat late night transport service has had a major impact in minimizing harm to intoxicated young people and reducing community crime by providing a free service that transports young people home or to other safe places.
Weave’s Streetbeat Late Night Transport Program provides a late night transport service to young people in the Inner Sydney, Inner West and surrounding areas who are unable to get home. The program has been running for the past 15 years and our bus goes out every Friday and Saturday night with a skilled worker and volunteer. Young people call the bus on a toll free number to coordinate a lift home. We often get calls from local police to transport young people that have come in contact with the authorities. 70% of the young people using the bus identify as Aboriginal and we pick up more than 250 young people a year.
The success of the program is due to ongoing community support, stakeholder interest and long standing relationships with young people that know that there is someone to call when they need a safe lift home or someone to talk with. Through this service, young people who require ongoing support or intervention are referred to Weave counsellors and youth workers to support them with their needs.
Outcomes of this program include a reduction of street crime, a reduction of alcohol or drug fueled violence, increased opportunities for young people to access support and early intervention.
Streetbeat is always seeking new volunteers to go out on the bus, if you are interested please contact the office on 9318 0539.