Vinnies donation bins at Ruthven and Long streets are overflowing, charity bins, st vincent de paul, Monday, January 1, 2018.
Vinnies donation bins at Ruthven and Long streets are overflowing, charity bins, st vincent de paul, Monday, January 1, 2018. Kevin Farmer

Vandals, thieves force Vinnies to pay for security guards

A SPATE of vandalism, thefts and illegal dumpings has forced a Toowoomba Vinnies store into paying out of its own pocket for security guards.

The move comes just a week after the store, on the corner of Ruthven and Long Sts, announced it was installing CCTV cameras to deter thieves and vandals.

"We're just doing it on a trial basis to see whether that assists with the issues because we have to break the cycle of what is happening there," executive officer of the St Vincent de Paul Society's Toowoomba diocese Kathie Brosnan said.

"It is costing us an awful lot of money, it's over $50,000 a year to dispose of unsellable items and there has been a couple of issues with illegal vandalism and theft too.

"It's an overall problem throughout (Toowoomba) but it has got to the point where it is not sustainable any more."

Overflowing rubbish at charity bins on the Toowoomba Range, as discovered by resident Marg Roberts when she went to make a donation.
Overflowing rubbish at charity bins on the Toowoomba Range, as discovered by resident Marg Roberts when she went to make a donation. Contributed

The security guards will be keeping watch over the premises on weekends, when Ms Brosnan said "most of the problems occur".

"There is no need to steal from the society and we'd like to educate the public," Ms Brosnan said.

"We are there to help anybody and if people are in crisis and aren't able to assist themselves that's what we are there for."


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