Community safety


We recognise that crime reduction and prevention is not the sole responsibility of the Police, but requires a partnership with the whole community.

It is recognised that crime reduction and prevention is more effective when done collaboratively, using a combination of measures that are tailored to local circumstances.

Community safety achievements

Council has achieved the following towards improving safety in our community:

  • The Byron Bay Town Centre Masterplan provides a holistic masterplan including place-making, public domain improvements and community safety elements to guide future development in the Byron Bay CBD.

  • Safe Summer in the Bay positively impacting on the New Year's Eve crowds and behaviour, making New Year's Eve fun and safe.

  • Working with the Schoolies Safety Response Working Group to deliver a safe environment for school leavers, that encourages respect for the community and a relaxed holiday.

  • Upgrade of lighting around the Byron Bay taxi rank and the installation of CCTV aimed at taxi driver safety through a Safer Suburbs grant for Taxi Rank Security.
  • The Better Byron Crew cleans and maintains the Byron Bay Town Centre daily. This ensures clear sight lines and a clean and tidy environment assisting with passive surveillance and reducing the opportunity for crime.

Safer Community Compact 

To be eligible for annual crime prevention funding from the State government Council is required to consult with the local community.

This approach is documented in our Safer Community Compact 2016 - 2019.

Council developed the Compact as an evidence-based plan that draws on statistical information to develop a crime profile. Through consultation with the Police, community stakeholders and local service providers, two priority crimes were identified for Byron Shire:

  1. Assault - Non-Domestic Violence

  2. Other Theft

The Safer Community Compact outlines strategies for preventing and reducing the incidence of these priority crimes. It builds on the 2003 Community Safety Plan, incorporates the 2007 Community Safety Audit of Ocean Shores and Brunswick Heads and the 2008 Community Safety Audit of the Byron Bay Central Business District.

Supporting actions on the number one priority crime are the alcohol-free zones throughout the Shire. In all town centres drinking of alcohol in the streets and parks is not allowed.

We have been successful in obtaining NSW Crime Prevention funds to implement strategies and projects from the Safer Community Compact, including upgrades to street and park lighting, trial of a late night bus and an alcohol education campaign.

For further information about community safety projects, contact Community Development 02 6626 7000.

Community safety camera program

Assault (non-domestic violence) and alcohol-related crime are well documented for the Byron Bay CBD. Byron Bay is a well-known tourist destination with over two million visitors each year. It is an entertainment precinct with high rates of alcohol-related violence, especially during peak holiday times.  Although recent crime prevention projects have reduced the statistics of alcohol-related assault, there is still a level of concern among the community and local businesses around high rates of anti-social behaviour on our streets.

To help address these issues Byron Shire Council received funding through the Australian Government's Safer Streets Program for the installation of CCTV cameras in the Byron Bay CBD.

The project saw the installation of improved lighting and CCTV cameras in identified hot spots to help deter anti-social behaviour, reduce the fear of crime and improve public safety and the perception of safety in the area.

Camera locations

Improved lighting and CCTV cameras have been installed in Apex Park and Jonson Street in the Byron Bay CBD.

View a map of the camera locations(PDF, 4MB)

Code of Practice

The Code of Practice for Council's guidance on the use of CCTV(PDF, 613KB) outlines the objectives of the program and basic standards under which the Community Safety Camera Program is operated.

Requests for CCTV footage

All recorded Community Safety Camera Program footage will be kept for a maximum of 30 days. Footage is deleted after 30 days unless a valid request to hold certain footage is received prior to the 30 day deadline.

All crimes should be reported to the Police, who can request CCTV footage to assist with solving the crime.

  1. A member of the public has the right to apply for the information under the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (PPIPA Act). A copy of an 'Application for Access to Personal or Health Information' can be obtained from Council; or
  2. A person can apply for information under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act).

The display of recorded material to the public will only be allowed where there is a demonstrated overriding public interest for disclosure or in any other circumstances provided by the law. Where display of recorded material occurs the personal information of other people in the footage will be obscured.