Mount Isa's chamber of commerce want CCTV cameras installed in the city to proactively disturb and disperse criminal elements before crimes can be committed.
Commerce North West said they have been approached by members concerned with the growing youth crime in Mount Isa and were seeking funding to trial an actively monitored City Safe program supported by Mount Isa Police.
"We propose that the existing CCTV cameras be used proactively to disturb and disrupt criminal elements within the city," Commerce president Emma Harman said.
"The CCTV Cameras in Mount Isa are not currently monitored. Instead, police access recorded footage retrospectively to assist them with solving crimes that have been committed. We propose that the cameras be used proactively to disturb and disrupt criminal elements in town before they have had a chance to commit more serious and costly offences.
The call comes after Mount Isa City Council resolved to install 28 new cameras across town while the model Commerce North West are proposing is based on the Cairns City Safe program.
Under the program, the cameras will be monitored during key times of the night when crime is most common. The person monitoring the cameras would have direct communications with a security team and local police. If the cameras detect a group of people gathering or behaving suspiciously, the monitor can request the security team to attend and move them on. If this is not successful, then police can be called for immediate attendance.
The chamber said the model has proved to be very successful in reducing property and other crime in Cairns CBD and it could can have similar success here.
The CCTV cameras are Mount Isa City Council assets. The screens are located within the Mount Isa Police Station and are used by officers to identify evidence to support investigations. The Mount Isa City Council is unable to fund the trial so Commerce North West are seeking funding from elsewhere to implement a trial of the program.
"The Commerce North West board believe that this program could be a valuable tool in the difficult task of managing recidivist juvenile crime," Ms Harman said.
"We believe the trial will be a success and that it will ultimately save the business community, Queensland Police and the Mount Isa City Council thousands of dollars each year. Solving crimes is a costly business for everyone. We anticipate that ultimately, far less money will be spent on prevention of crime using this model than is spent reactively once the crime is committed."
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