Safety fears in Palmerston North CBD are keeping shoppers awayPosted by On


Armed police respond to a callout in The Square after a young person brandished a toy gun in August.

WARWICK SMITH/Stuff

Armed police respond to a callout in The Square after a young person brandished a toy gun in August.

Anti-social behaviour is on the rise in Palmerston North, making shoppers hesitant to spend time and money along the city’s main shopping streets.

Groups of young people are regularly spotted in the afternoon loitering near the Main Street bus station and iSite in The Square.

Business owners and patrons say they have been subjected to abuse, aggressive behaviour and verbal threats. Certain businesses have reacted by deciding to close earlier, removing pavement seating, but both staff and patrons are losing patience.

A regular at the Coffee Club opposite the bus station, who wished to remain anonymous for fear of harassment, said it felt like the group was holding the area to ransom.

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Young people have been gathering around the Main Street Bus Terminal and business owners say it’s scaring off customers.

Stuff

Young people have been gathering around the Main Street Bus Terminal and business owners say it’s scaring off customers.

“They’re just out of control.

“They’ll come in aggressively demanding free stuff, they’ll toss chairs around, they’ll sometimes stand out in the middle of the road with no regard for traffic and the abuse they’ll shout at staff or each other is beyond belief.

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