The kids ‘raised in drug dens, locked in homes alone’

SOUTHSIDE residents believe more children will die if the government fails to act on their complaints.

Over the weekend, complaints on social media focused on reports to the Department of Child Safety and the Housing Department about Logan children believed to be caught up in public houses used as drug dens.

Those complaining on Crime Watch Logan Facebook page said they had raised concerns a number of times with the Department of Child Safety.

In one case, complaints were made more than eight times over two years about children left alone in houses in their neighbourhood.

Residents took to social media to say complaints were also lodged with Housing Minister Mick de Brenni and Waterford MP Shannon Fentiman.

Waterford MP Shannon Fentiman said she had brought together local community members and senior police to discuss the serious matters.
Waterford MP Shannon Fentiman said she had brought together local community members and senior police to discuss the serious matters.

Ms Fentiman said she had brought together local community members and senior police officers to discuss "these serious issues".

"I can assure residents that police are working with other departments to address these matters and keep our community safe."

Mr de Brenni said anybody who sees or hears any cause for concern regarding the mistreatment of children should call triple-0 immediately.

In one case, a neighbour heard a child crying at a property and found a toddler locked in a house with no adults present.

A neighbour made the little girl a Vegemite sandwich which she passed through the front window.

On another occasion, a neighbour saw a little girl wandering on a busy road at dusk wearing only a nappy.

The toddler was picked up and returned to the property and the gate locked.

The Department of Housing was called to a southside public housing property in 2018 after neighbours reported a loud disturbance, yelling, abusive language and a front window being smashed.

Neighbours rang the Housing Department and the Child Safety Department.

However, a year later neighbours were still complaining about having to endure around-the-clock visitors.

A senior officer with the Housing Department said allegations about any drug taking at public housing would be investigated.

Shadow Housing Minister Michael Hart said the community had done the right thing by ringing the alarm bell and both the Child Safety Department and the Housing Department should thoroughly investigate the concerns.

"Good government would ensure these types of situations are controlled rather than just responded to when tragedy strikes," he said.

"Shannon Fentiman needs to explain why the community's concerns failed to lead to action from her government."

Logan residents said their voice was heard after they held a street march calling for more police on the beat to help stem crime and drugs in the community.

Following the June rally, 10 more police were put on the ground in Logan, with six allocated to the vulnerable persons unit.