Issued: Thursday 2 March 2017
A program, where offenders have cleaned up more than 30 garbage truck loads of vegetation and litter from train stations, has been rewarded for keeping the community cleaner and safer.
The Changing Outlooks initiative, a collaboration between Transport NSW and Corrective Services NSW since 2015, received a TfNSW award at a ceremony in Sydney this week for its commitment to beautify and maintain NSW rail sites.
Acting Assistant Commissioner for Community Corrections Michelle Micallef said the program allowed offenders, subject to community work orders, to contribute to their local community and environment.
“The initiative was piloted on the Central Coast before it was rolled out in the Hunter region and was extended to Homebush and Strathfield in Sydney’s inner west,” Ms Micallef said.
“In the first 15 months of operation, offenders removed 400 cubic metres of vegetation, litter and discarded syringes – the equivalent of 30 garbage trucks.
“Offenders learn to follow instruction and work in a team while also connect with their local community in a positive way.
“I would like to congratulate all the staff involved in the initiative and hope similar programs can be used with other agencies.”
The majority of the work is completed on weekends because the offenders are employed during the week.
The participants collect on average 56 garbage bags of vegetation and litter each weekend.
“The Changing Outlooks program is an excellent example of how government agencies form partnerships that support each other’s’ goals,” Transport for NSW Deputy Secretary, Customer Services, Tony Braxton-Smith said.
“The work has significantly improved the look and feel around these stations, restoring the sense of cleanliness and safety that customers expect and appreciate.
“We look forward to working with Corrective Services to bring the same benefits to more stations in the future.”
The program also addresses the Premier’s Priority of keeping the environment clean by reducing litter by 40 per cent by 2020.