Patrick Counihan, Irish Central, May 13, 2012
Australian police have ordered a crackdown on the drunken Irish workers causing chaos in the Western city of Perth.
Government officials have even threatened to deport the Irish after a series of violent incidents involving drunken revellers.
Newly arrived immigrants working in the Australian mining industry are being blamed for the antics during their down time.
One Perth bar has even considered banning all Irish customers after a wave of alcohol-fuelled violence and the destruction of property.
The Sunday Independent reports that local GAA clubs in Western Australia are being asked to get involved and educate young Irish immigrants and backpackers about their destructive behaviour.
Western Australian police told the paper that they want to get the message across to all Irish people in Perth that what has been happening was not acceptable and if it continues there would be consequences.
“It is clear that there are some significant differences in the policing of licensed premises in Australia to those in Ireland,” said Inspector Paul Steel.
“Young people have been warned that if they don’t abide by the law their visas will be investigated and they could face possible deportation.
St Finbarr’s GAA club has sent all its members an emailing stating that: “Perth police are extremely unhappy and appalled by the antisocial behaviour taking place all too often on the streets and in the pubs across Perth.
“Even rental agencies are not willing to rent properties to Irish people in Perth as they are getting destroyed during parties and being left in terrible conditions once vacated.
“Please spread the word to your fellow Irish, as this is affecting all of our reputations here, not only the people who are causing the trouble.”
A police spokesperson said: “This action is in response to reports of a disproportionate number of Irish involved in offences within these entertainment precincts.
“The Irish, however, are only one nationality in a number associated with the backpacker scene where further targeted activities are planned to increase awareness of local liquor licensing and criminal laws.”
Western Australia GAA president Robert O’Callaghan told the Independent: “Basically, some Irish officers based here, who have got friends in the Perth clubs, took it upon themselves to have a chat with the Irish football and hurling association just to let them know what was going on.
“The police are using the GAA as a platform to pass on the message to the wider community.”
Longford woman Bridget Kelly, who runs the Shed Bar in Perth, told Newstalk radio station that she didn’t want to see it get to the stage where the opportunities for the Irish would diminish because of a few.
“There is a lot of work for young Irish people and it would be dreadful to see the few causing the problem making it so difficult for others who wanted to emigrate to Australia,” she said.
“Mostly it’s all alcohol-fuelled violence and involves damage to property.
“A lot of the venues are just getting fed up with the damage to property, the violence, even fighting with each other, stuff that’s never happened before and that’s getting really, really bad.”
Kelly added: “I have spoken to police and they said 90 per cent of arrests made at the weekend involved Irish people.
“Their cells are just full every weekend and when they wake up from their comatose state they are very apologetic and just said, ‘I’m sorry, I never do that’, but it’s too late.”