A STREAM of people coming and going from a house at a seniors’ complex on Parkway Road have been shoplifting, begging and causing havoc for two years, say Bibra Lake locals.
Residents at the over-55s public housing complex describe it like “living in hell,” witnessing loud arguments, threats and police visits twice a week.
Paul Buckingham, who owns the the IGA across the road, says he has banned anyone who visits the infamous house from entering his shop.
“I personally feel like it’s affected our business,” he says.
“I’ve had to walk customers out to the car because they’re afraid.”
He has witnessed screaming matches in the car park, beggars who turn “aggro” when they are not given money, and countless attempts at shoplifting.
Mr Buckingham submitted his first complaint to the housing authority on January 31 last year, but resident Tracy Garbes says it’s been going on at least two years.
“The authorities are very much aware, but so far nothing has happened,” Ms Garbes says.
Cockburn deputy mayor Lee-Anne Smith says Homeswest and Willagee Labor MP Peter Tinley have been responsive, but residents need to keep the pressure up.
“It disturbs me to see residents going through all of that,” Cr Smith says.
The only positive was “the way the community has wrapped themselves around these residents in need and supported them”.
“At times like these you can see social media being used effectively, for the good of people, calling the residents, tagging the elected member in posts.
“It’s a long, drawn-out process, you can’t just evict people over night, but it’s frustrating and hard on all the residents.”
Cr Smith says the council has increased security patrols in the area.
“When it comes to state government issues, you can just do the handball, or you can take it on and lobby it, and encourage everyone to keep making reports.”
Homeswest housing director Greg Cash says the department has been working with the tenant to try and come up with strategies to deal with the visitors, who cause nearly all the problems.
“The department is taking action under the Residential Tenancies Act 1987 to resolve the problem,” Mr Cash says.
by ALICE ANGELONI