Fifteen-year-old Natasha-Lee McGilligan set up an online petition to persuade politicians that cameras are needed in graveyards in the wake of two attacks on her sister Roxie’s grave in the city’s Jeanfield Cemetery.
The Perth Grammar School pupil decided to do something to draw attention to the problem after toys and other tributes left by Roxie’s grave were either taken or trashed.
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The incidents happened just three weeks after her funeral in April last year then again in February this year. Roxie only lived to be a couple of weeks old after developing a bowel condition.
Natasha-Lee told the Perthshire Advertiser: “It is just disgusting that people think it is okay to do this kind of thing.
“It is happening regularly at the graveyard and nothing is getting done about it at the moment.
“I don’t think it’s fair that grieving families are just being left to deal with it. Enough is enough. This has to get sorted.”
Natasha-Lee’s petition has already garnered more than 600 signatures, with several supporters reporting similar attacks on their relatives’ graves.
One supporter said: “As the grandparent of a stillborn boy I know how distressing it is to have items stolen from his grave and gangs of youths trampling on it.”
Another said: “I have also experienced this disgusting behaviour. I have had items stolen from my dad’s grave like ornaments, flowers and plants. It is heartbreaking.”
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Yesterday Perth and North Perthshire MP Pete Wishart said: “I was appalled when I heard about the vandalism at Jeanfield Cemetery. To think that someone would sink so low and deface a grave site is just sickening.
“I would be interested to hear more from Natasha-Lee regarding her petition and her desire to see CCTV installed in cemeteries.
“I will be raising this matter with the local authority to see if anything further can be done to ensure that grave sites are not at risk from disgraceful acts of vandalism.”
Natasha-Lee’s petition is at www.change.org/p/goverments-and-mps-get-cctv-camera-s-in-graveyards-across-scotland.