Galliagh ‘starved

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A Derry community worker says serious anti-social behaviour and ongoing car crime in one of the city’s most deprived areas will continue unless politicians take
 urgent action.

Ollie Green, who has worked in the Galliagh community for more than 20 years, spoke out after an upsurge in crime in the area over recent days. He said the area has been starved for decades with a lack of investment
 and services.

Police, meanwhile, said they intend to step up patrols in the area following a number of serious incidents.

Last weekend, two vehicles were burnt out in the Galliagh Park area close to a number of homes. One of the vehicles, a camper van, had earlier been stolen in the Gleneagles area, while a car stolen in Templegrove was also torched.

Police say they want to reassure the public that there will be an increase in patrols and that car crime is a major priority for them.

However, community worker Ollie Green said that, unless more long term issues are dealt with, problems in the area will persist.

Mr. Green told the ‘Journal’: “The people of our community don’t deserve to be treated in this way. The sense of enforced second class citizenship and lack of real investment by successive governments and local authorities is still a blazing reality. The basic facilities in Galliagh haven’t changed very much in the past 30 years; you still can’t walk into a cafe, pub, dentist, doctors, or even buy a pair of socks - our people are starved of social amenities.

“As our politicians come knocking on doors over the coming weeks to ask for votes, we want them to put our area as a key objective in their manifestos.

“We’ve heard lots of talk over the past three decades about what should happen in our community, but when people are living alongside 
these kind of problems every week of their lives, 
talk is cheap.”