Graffiti Laws Could Turn Hopscotch Drawing into Criminal Offense

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A new proposed anti-graffiti law in New South Wales Parliament would make any intentional mark on any premise or property without the permission of the owner an offense, according to Australia’s ABC Media.

How strict would this law be? It would include the hopscotch squares drawn on the sidewalks we all remember from our childhoods.

Greens Party member David Shoebridge told ABC Media there is no requirement in the legislation for a mark to be permanent or difficult to remove, meaning yes, the chalk hopscotch squares or handball courts drawn on footpaths and sidewalks would be considered as punishable offenses.

Perhaps in an effort to teach children good manners, Shoebridge said “unless the kids get the consent of the local council they’re committing an offense.”

If children get caught by authorities they can face a $440 fine, which Shoebridge says is “just nonsense.”

Attorney-General Greg Smith said drawing in chalk will technically be an offense, but that while police always will have the discretion about whether to press charges.

Smith thinks it will be unlikely that police will be citing children for drawing in chalk on sidewalks.