What is happening in Alice Springs? The town in the middle of a crime wave

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For the inhabitants of Alice Springscrime has been a growing problem for months and months.

But the crisis has only just come to national awareness over the past week.

The crime wave is so bad that Prime Minister Anthony Albanese had to make a sudden visit to the city.

So why is this impossibly isolated town of about 26,000 people making headlines?

What’s going on in Alice Springs?

View from Anzac Hill down Hartley St on a beautiful winter's evening in Alice Springs, Northern Territory, Australia
A crime wave in Alice Springs has prompted a visit from Anthony Albanese. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Simply put, crime is out of control in the red center, with residents reporting a spike in burglaries, vandalism and alcohol-related assaults.

The latest data released by NT Police showed a sharp increase in crime in the year ending November.

But locals say the situation has worsened since then.

Why has crime increased so dramatically?

There are many reasons for the causes of crime in any community, but increased access to alcohol is considered a major factor in Alice Springs’ crime wave.

Stronger Futures legislation introduced in 2012 restricted the purchase of alcohol and banned it on large swaths of Indigenous land.

The legislation had been in place for 10 years, expired last year and has not been renewed.

What is the territorial government doing to address the problem?

The territory’s government has introduced strict new bans on the purchase of alcohol.

Take-out alcohol purchases will be prohibited on Mondays and Tuesdays and will only be permitted between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on the remaining days. Each person will have a limit of one transaction per day.

The measures came into effect yesterday and will be in place for three months.

The territory will also step up anti-crime measures with increased federal funding.

What is the federal government doing?

Canberra will invest $14.2 million in high-visibility policing operations, specifically targeting toddy running. Liquor license compliance inspections will also be increased.

The government will also invest more in emergency accommodation for young people.

Additional funds will also be invested in family violence services, First Nations justice measures, health infrastructure and Indigenous housing.

Anthony Albanese announced new funding in Alice Springs yesterday.
Anthony Albanese announced new funding in Alice Springs yesterday. (Kate Geraghty)

Will the army or the federal police be sent?

No. Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has already ruled out using AFP to restore order.

“The idea that they have more enhanced skills than someone who is here on the ground in Alice Springs and the local Northern Territory police, I haven’t seen anyone make that argument yet,” he said. he stated yesterday.

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What is happening in Alice Springs? The town in the middle of a crime wave

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