An Irish publican in Perth has spoken out, warning that the antisocial behaviour of a small minority of Irish in Western Australia will ruin opportunities for the majority.
Ms Kenny owns The Shed bar in Northbridge, the area now being targeted by Perth police, and says that she and her fellow publicans are not willing to tolerate any more unruly antics from the Irish.
The Longford native revealed how both her door staff and those behind the bar have encountered violent and verbal abuse from a small segment of the Irish community, who have come to Perth for work opportunities.
Ms Kenny believes that their actions are typically down to the culture shock experienced by many Irish nationals upon their initial arrival to Australia.
“They are acting up a lot and it’s a combination of factors leading up to it,” she told the Irish Echo.
“It’s the violence of it all. The violence and non-acceptance of things. They turn up to the pub completely ossified and we can’t let them in.
“As a result they’re attacking security, they’re attacking staff because they just feel like they’re being discriminated against.
“It’s not because we don’t want to let them in, it’s the law over here and the door staff are just doing their jobs.
“With the licensing laws to do with alcohol here they’re a lot stricter and the Irish arriving here are finding that very hard,” she continued.
Ms Kenny stressed that such behaviour generally occurs during an initial period of adapting and insists that the vast majority of Irish are well-behaved once they adjust.
She commended the local police for their hard work. “It’s embarrassing sometimes, they put up with a lot.”
:: Away from home
She has been living in Australia for 21 years and believes that there is a problem of antisocial behaviour among some Irish and it is a new phenomenon.
She attributes this change in attitude to the success of the mining industry in Perth, where a large proportion of Irish are working.
She believes that the isolation of the industry is largely responsible for the excessive drinking habits of the Irish in Western Australia.
“The mining industry has a huge impact on a lot of the aggression over here. There’s a reason behind it with these kids, they are away from home and the mining industry brings with it an awful lot of loneliness.
“For these guys the pub at home is very much a place to meet up with everyone and then they come over here to the most remote place in the world, not even in Australia, the world.
“They are up their for three weeks and then they get one week off and they head down to Perth and just go mad.
“You can understand it really, it’s just not in our DNA to be isolated like that,” she added.
She has urged those contemplating making the move from Ireland to Western Australia to take these factors into account.
She believes the police in Western Australia have now reached the end of their tether with antisocial behaviour and will soon begin sending offenders home.