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Crackdown on screaming children

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 05:35 AM

Crackdown on screaming children by Dee Why Grand shopping centre

NOISY children have been banned from a Sydney shopping centre in a move that one parenting expert says reflects society's growing intolerance.

The Dee Why Grand on Sydney's northern beaches, which claims to cater for young families, has introduced its new policy following complaints about out-of-control children.

The notice from centre management reads: "Stop. Parents please be considerate of other customers using the food court. Screaming children will not be tolerated in the centre."


So unless you know exactly how your child is going to behave at any given minute. DO NOT shop at Dee Why.

#2 JustBeige

Posted 20 February 2013 - 05:41 AM

This seems like blatant discrimination to me.  I do hope that the centre cops a fine or some other public castigation over this.

Its a 'normal' shopping centre, with a Coles and Aldi, not a fine dining restaurant or a series of high class/price boutiques.

How utterly ridiculous.   What a bunch of pretentious snobs.

ETA: damn tablet

Edited by JustBeige, 20 February 2013 - 05:43 AM.

#3 JaneDoe2010

Posted 20 February 2013 - 05:49 AM

Wow.  huh.gif


Posted 20 February 2013 - 05:55 AM

What got me is there is apparently a kids play area near the food court, and this is where most of the screaming is coming from.

#5 FeralSis

Posted 20 February 2013 - 05:56 AM

I would be voting with my feet and taking my business elsewhere!

As if it isn't hard enough at those unfortunate moments when the little darlings throw a wobbly!

Even the most placid child can have a tantrum at the shops.

ETA: the article mentions running amok and screaming.  It also mentions having a quiet cup of tea in the foodcourt. Even with no playground I find foodcourts noisy?!

Edited by SensibleSis, 20 February 2013 - 06:01 AM.

#6 FeralHez

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:06 AM

If i want a *quiet* cuppa I wouldn't go to the foodcourt....

Vote with your feet people!!

#7 clrw

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:06 AM

They'll recind it within a week. Utterly stupid.

#8 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:08 AM

I really hope parents vote with their feet and leave en masse.

Does anyone know if that's possible (other options in the area?)

That will teach those sulking staff who will no longer have a job because there are no customers.

And as for the bit about mother's controlling their kids rant.gif

#9 Fr0g

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:10 AM

I'm not a Dee Why local, but if i was I'd definitely be shopping elsewhere.

The retail sector is struggling enough as it is, it seems foolish to p*ss-off a large percentage of the community by discriminating against scresming children! It's a shame that a Centre Management decision might impact upon individual retailers who might actuslly rely upon and WELCOME young families (like kid's clothing, ice cream shops) etc for trade.

#10 Madnesscraves

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:16 AM

This just iosolates mums even further. If everyone started banning screaming children it will soon follow non screaming children... We'll just never leave the house.

Kids scream. I get it. They're excited. Tired. Happy. cranky. Whatever.

Well. I don't live there but I certainly won't be shopping there!

#11 JaneDoe2010

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:32 AM

QUOTE (Back2Insanity @ 20/02/2013, 07:14 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Hope some locals organise to descend on mass to the food court with their children.

Ha ha I was just thinking of that - a bit like the Kochie-style breastfeeding sit in.  tongue.gif

#12 Niamh23

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:35 AM

QUOTE (JaneDoe2010 @ 20/02/2013, 07:32 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Ha ha I was just thinking of that - a bit like the Kochie-style breastfeeding sit in.  tongue.gif

Don't know that a "screaming child" protest will attract quite the same level of public support...

#13 JaneDoe2010

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:36 AM

QUOTE (Niamh23 @ 20/02/2013, 07:35 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Don't know that a "screaming child" protest will attract quite the same level of public support...

laugh.gif  Yes I think you're right. The idea made me laugh though. wink.gif

#14 Madnesscraves

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:37 AM

QUOTE (Sassy Girl @ 20/02/2013, 07:35 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I like the idea as I am sick of parents that don't discipline their children. It's appalling when you go out and see badly behaved children. The parents are doing absolutely nothing about their children's behaviour except ignoring it and subjecting other people to their undisciplined children  rant.gif

Even from an early age I knew how my children would behave when I went out. Three would behave perfectly, one would throw temper  tantrums from the time she was 6 months until she was 3.5 years.

Ill ignore the last paragraph. It sounds a bit pretentious.

But would it be kinder to put a sign up saying 'please consider other diners and moderate your children's behaviour'?

#15 wombat

Posted 20 February 2013 - 06:50 AM

I'm not going to be popular around here but I think it's great.  I cannot beleive the level of shrieking that comes from the play area in my local shopping centre.  A few of the ladies who work in coles which is right in front of the play area have commented to me on numerous occassions about the ridiculous noise level they have to put up with all day.  Why should workers have to put up with excessive noise day in and day out because parents can't be bothered parenting their kids?  It wouldn't be tolerated in other work places but because it's a shopping centre its allowed?  Not fair. I stood at the checkout for a good 15 minutes one day and all you could hear was the same child screaming at the top of his lungs the entire time, whilst mum & dad continued on with thier conversation like nothing was happening.  So rude IMO.

#16 Bart.

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:03 AM

I don't think it'd be the occasional yell from a disgruntled child that would be the problem; it'd be the hours of endless, high-pitched screaming and squealing that they'd be complaining about and I also have to agree.  Maybe it wasn't good planning have the play area so close to the food court but the thinking would be that the parents could eat whilst their children played safely near by.  I think it's fair to ask parents to intervene if the children are becoming too rowdy and loud.

ETA: I think the sign has been worded badly; the use of the term 'screaming' is too generalised.

Edited by Bart., 20 February 2013 - 07:08 AM.

#17 Guest_Dinah_Harris_*

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:05 AM

While I understand that the noise level at a children's playground can be high,  the shopping centre could come up with ways to mitigate this by enclosing it or placing it more thoughtfully within the centre.  McDonalds manages it successfully; why can't a shopping centre?  
When people wonder why parents are feeling isolated and depressed,  stories like this answer the question.   Destroying community has a cost.  Our society is so intolerant of anyone who doesn't fit our precise requirements for having a good time that it's no wonder people stay inside their houses and die from loneliness.

Is it so difficult to have empathy for another human being?

#18 Banana Pancakes

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:14 AM

I cant see what the problem is  huh.gif
Kids should not be screaming inside, its bloody annoying and painful when there is a mob of kids screaming and shrieking  away together.
Ive spent many hours trying to teach my kids about inside and outside voices. Of course when they were younger they would occasionally scream inside but I reminded them about inside voices and they would calm down. Its not like they can go to school and start screaming in the classroom.

#19 Chchgirl

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:22 AM

I don't have little kids anymore, but I find the lack of tolerance of children in Australia now is quite disheartening..

I am not likely to go to Dee Why, but I definitely would not go to this shopping centre. If I want fine dining or a quiet coffee, I wouldn't choose a food court. If the playground is indoors (and this is a playground and food court people are complaining about), then it is the fault of the owners of the building and it should be taken up with them to move it or remove it, rather than the very people it was put there for in the first place.


Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:22 AM

I just hope those who think it is okay, never have a child who is prone to having a meltdown or tantrum at any time for any reason.
Should parents of these children have to stay at home and never go out to shopping centres for fear of offending someone?

#21 Chchgirl

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:26 AM

QUOTE (fairyflossfart @ 20/02/2013, 08:22 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I just hope those who think it is okay, never have a child who is prone to having a meltdown or tantrum at any time for any reason.
Should parents of these children have to stay at home and never go out to shopping centres for fear of offending someone?

Do you think it's a capital city thing? I never have felt this way when out in regional areas or overseas, but always felt in Sydney I am an inconvenience..although not so much now but definitely a difference.

#22 ~~~

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:28 AM

I find this ridiculous. My children have always been fairly well controlled, but they have their moments. Would I be asked to leave if one of them gets overexcited and squeals or has a high pitch? Where do you draw the line and I am also interested if this is in fact legal to do so..... Its not a public area per se but the public would be walking through there.

I agree with some of the above comments that the centre should have thought more about where they place their play area when designing it... Guess I'm glad not to live in DY anymore.....

#23 Mrs Dinosaurus

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:30 AM

QUOTE (Banana Pancakes @ 20/02/2013, 07:14 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I cant see what the problem is  huh.gif
Kids should not be screaming inside, its bloody annoying and painful when there is a mob of kids screaming and shrieking  away together.
Ive spent many hours trying to teach my kids about inside and outside voices. Of course when they were younger they would occasionally scream inside but I reminded them about inside voices and they would calm down. Its not like they can go to school and start screaming in the classroom.

No, but it's not like they are horn ready for the classroom either.

Kids make noise, especially when excited. I too spend endless hours teaching my sons when it is or isn't appropriate to make lots of noise but I don't have an off button if they have a meltdown and though I do try to mitigate their shopping behaviour by only going when they're happy sometimes I have to get milk or take one to a doctor or take myself to a doctor,or see a friend visiting interstate for inequality day...you know, life!!

It's only happening because it's kids and an easy way to blame and control mothers in public, further shunning them for daring to bring their children out in public.

I was at dinner at Lynch's , a restaurant made famous by banning children and winning the court case (against Julia Gillard no less) - beautiful place, one night diners at the next table spent an hour talking loudly and drunkenly into a mobile phone being passed around the table. I asked the waiter about it but he said he couldn't do anything about it. I asked him if he thought a baby would be this disruptive to other diners for such a long time and maybe he would consider banning mobile phones?

They have closed down now but my point is that adults are drunk, obnoxious, loud and inappropriate morning, noon and night  - from peak hour train rides to work to drunken diners to footy to the park which provides BBQ areas right next to the playground so if we go on the weekend it's hit and miss whether the kids will be sharing the swings with drunk adults, subject to swearing, groping and other foul behaviour.

If the playground is a problem move the bloody play ground,  don't advertise yourself as family friendly, invite kids in to shop, eat, play (spend money that keeps youin business)  and then tell them they can't be kids.

#24 MintyBiscuit

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:33 AM

I wonder what "won't be tolerated" means? Tasers? Kiddy lock up?

I can see both sides. DS is generally pretty good with noise, but then with no warning will let out a yell, or be giggling happily then shriek with no warning. I tell him to be quiet, but he doesn't always understand. And kids are noisy, so even if there's no "screaming" there will be noise. If they don't want it in the foodcourt, they shouldn't have the playground there.

But, I (and I'm sure most others) have seen the kids yelling and screaming and fighting in the shopping centre playgrounds while the parents sit on the edge chatting to each other and basically ignoring the kids. Yes, I know, everyone has bad days and I don't know the ins and outs of everyone's lives, but I can see from the perspective of those just doing their shopping or having their lunch that it's very annoying. The noises I find cute from DS would no doubt drive strangers a bit bonkers, particularly if it was at top volume and just kept going.

The wording is harsh, and if they seriously wanted to curb the noise I think it would be better to remove the playground, but as PPs have mentioned if you don't like it you can always vote with your feet. And then see how quickly they change things.

#25 tres-chic

Posted 20 February 2013 - 07:33 AM

I think it's completely over the top and horribly intolerant too.

This is a food court next to a children's play area. Where children should be free to be children.

I am not advocating parents letting kids run amok and scream the place down, most parents do try and moderate their children's behaviour and watch them in indoor playgrounds and the like.

Agree with Dinosaurus 100%.

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