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Denver Partners Against Graffiti

All graffiti supply check outs have been put on hold until further notice.

If there is graffiti on your property or in your neighborhood, please report it through or by calling 311 so that our graffiti crews can remove it.


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Denver Partners Against Graffiti provides free graffiti removal assistance on business and residential properties within the City & County of Denver. Our crews remove graffiti using current equipment and graffiti removal methods (painting, hand cleaning or power washing).


Denver Partners Against Graffiti offers:

  • FREE graffiti removal supplies for citizens to remove graffiti from their property.
  • FREE graffiti removal supplies for citizens to remove graffiti in their community.
  • Assistance in organizing community graffiti cleanups.
  • Speakers for school, business, community and civic groups.
  • A variety of volunteer opportunities to keep our communities graffiti free.


Graffiti Prevention

An ounce of prevention is worth more than a gallon of cover-up paint. Here are three tips that can help prevent graffiti on your property:

  1. Quick removal: The best prevention is the quick removal of tags or graffiti, since the primary goal of graffiti vandals is for their "work" to be seen. If graffiti is removed quickly, there's less payoff for the risk and work involved.  Call 311 to order free supplies to remove graffiti from your property.
  2. Make your property less inviting for Tagging: By installing motion-sensing lights and removing shrubs or bushes that conceal graffiti vandalism in progress, thereby making your property less appealing.
  3. Make it difficult and unappealing: Repair broken fences and remove any objects that could make it easy to gain entry to your property. Install low, dense, thorny bushes around walls to make it difficult to get in close enough to tag. Plant ivy or other wall-climbing plants to make the "blank canvas" of your wall less appealing.

About tagging

There are several kinds of graffiti and the term refers to several forms of vandalism, from large spray paint murals (about 5% of graffiti nationally) to "tagging," or quick scrawls of a name using a spray can, marker or etching implement (about 80% of graffiti nationally). 

image of spray paint can and hand with words STOP in frontTagging is the quickest, easiest, most pervasive and most expensive form of graffiti vandalism, and is like logo placement or brand advertising. The primary goal of tagging is to advertise the vandal's "tag" (or street name) and "crew" (tagging group or gang set) and get recognition from others for prominent placement of tags throughout the city. A tag in a location is a challenge or an invitation for another tagger to tag the same spot, either challenging the original tagger's ownership of the spot or reinforcing that ownership. In some cases, tagging is gang-related and marks a gang's territory, but often is solely for self-promotion. Taggers who cover a lot of territory or place tags in risky, high visibility locations get more recognition for their efforts. 

What this means to you

  • Denver Police track specific tags and crews, so reporting graffiti to the police is an important first step to long-term graffiti prevention. 
  • Clean-up is key. By removing the tags as quickly as possible, you not only make your location less desirable for new taggers but because the tag isn't there long enough to be seen, the original tagger will be less likely to hit the same spot again.
  • Don't give them the publicity they desire. Don't post photos or videos of graffiti, and don't allow the media to display any graffiti on your property. The publication of a tag gives the tagger a huge reward for his vandalism.


graphic of Brush Off logoThe graffiti "Brush Off" campaign provides an easy way for everyone to help prevent graffiti in our neighborhoods. Brush Off partners agree to keep a spot (such as a sign, pole, or dumpster) near their home clean, using free graffiti-removal supplies provided by the City.

Research suggests that the presence of graffiti “creates an environment that breeds bigger crimes.” Understanding that graffiti vandalism is a quality of life issue, Mayor Hancock and the City Council have made graffiti prevention a top priority in Denver by increasing graffiti cleanup, education and enforcement efforts. But we can’t prevent graffiti alone! That’s why we’ve created "The Brush Off" campaign – a partnership between the City and concerned citizens.


Denver Urban Arts Fund

Urban Arts Fund logo

The purpose of the Denver Urban Arts Fund is to prevent graffiti vandalism by generating positive, well-tended and active community gathering spaces. Its goal is to produce opportunities for young people to participate in diversionary art and leadership programs.  

Projects funded by the UAF should focus on measurable outcomes related to the prevention of graffiti vandalism, and involve artists in building strong and vibrant communities.

Each year the UAF provides funding (awards range from $500-$7500) for programs and projects that:

  • Help reclaim a graffiti hot spot and create a positive community space; and/or
  • Help create and increase youth access and exposure to positive and monitored alternatives and support systems, including positive arts opportunities.

For more information, or to fill out an application to request funding visit Denver Arts & Venues Urban Arts Fund page.


Quick Links

Report & Remove Graffiti

Report and Remove Graffiti ASAP:

Media Reporting Guidelines:

Please photograph abatement crew member(s) from behind or from the side. 
Please photograph graffiti tags out of focus or partially removed 

  • Tags are like brand names, and taggers want their "work" to be seen. A tagger’s motivation is exposure, exposure, exposure, and what better way to gain exposure - and notoriety - than through mass media? By blurring the graffiti, the tag isn't readable.

Please do not disclose exact locations:

  • Of recently cleaned areas. This is an open invitation announcing clean “canvasses” for taggers.
  • Of recently hit or tagged areas. This makes the properties in the area more vulnerable.
  • Of areas where property owners and residents are diligently maintaining their communities. Taggers see this as a battlefield – where they must win.

Remove Graffiti Yourself

The best graffiti removal method depends on the surface you're trying to remove graffiti from. "Graffiti Hurts" has some good removal tips, but prevention is the most important step you can take. Read our Prevention and Removal Tips fact sheet for more information.

You can help keep Denver graffiti free by picking up materials from a paint bank and covering graffiti vandalism when you see it. If the graffiti is on private property, permission must be granted from the owner/tenant prior to removal. The quicker graffiti is removed or covered, the less likely it is to return.

A paint bank is a location where citizens can pick up paint and materials at no charge to cover graffiti in Denver. Paint is available in seven standard colors and is packaged in 1 gallon containers.

Available paint colors are: grey, white, brick red, yellow beige (pale yellow), tobacco brown (warm brown), musket brown (dark brown) and viaduct beige (tan).

Dumpster beige paint to cover City dumpsters is also available in quart containers. Ask about other graffiti removal supplies used to clean items such as poles, signs and traffic control boxes.

Call 311 (720-913-1311) to order paint and to make arrangements for pick up, or visit one of the participating paint banks in your community.

**When picking up paint you must show proof of Denver residency**

Graffiti Ordinances

Quicker graffiti cleanup turnaround time after notification (once posted, 48 hours for non-residential property and 72 hours for residential property) from previous 10 days.

  • Free graffiti-removal assistance from the City, upon request.
  • Free graffiti-removal supplies (paint, etc.) from the City.
  • Shared responsibility for graffiti abatement to remove graffiti from private property.

  • Decrease the time graffiti vandalism is present in a community.
  • Decrease the incidents and frequency of repeat vandalism on a property.
  • Make nearby properties less vulnerable to graffiti vandalism.
  • Support the efforts of conscientious owners and tenants who maintain their property.
  • Improve City abatement team response time.

Handbills are Illegal In the City of Denver

It is unlawful to post, paint or attach, or to directly or indirectly cause to be posted, painted or attached in any manner, any handbill, poster, advertisement or notice of any kind upon public property except by permission of the manager of public works pursuant to established rules and regulations, or on private property except by permission of the owner or authorized agent of the owner of such property.

The person responsible for causing the unlawful posting of any notice described herein will be liable for the cost of removal. Persons liable under this section include, but are not limited to, any individuals or businesses whose advertisement, message or information appears on or is contained in notice posted unlawfully.

— Denver Municipal Code: 1950, 332, 6-2 855.3

Let’s all do our part to help Keep Denver Beautiful!