The Council of Majorca attended to 324 children who were victims of abuse in 2001.
The figure was revealed yesterday by Josefina Sintes, head of the Council of Majorca's social services department. Today is World Infants Day, and Sintes used the occasion to point out that the Balearics is one of the regions where cases of child abuse are most widely reported to the authorities. At the moment, there are 263 children in care, she said. Twenty per cent of the cases handled last year were for mental abuse, while 18 per cent were for emotional neglect, 13.8 per cent for physical abuse, 15.6 per cent because parents were unable to control the children and 3.5 per cent for sexual abuse. The Council of Majorca's social services department has three programmes to handle these cases. The first is to preserve the family unit, and its chief aim is to prevent the removal of the child from its family. The second is a programme of provisional separation, in which social workers work with the family and the minor, to favour the child's return to the family circle. The third programme is for sexual abuse cases. Sintes said that all departments were involved in cases of child abuse, but there is still need for a law on domestic violence, where both women and children are victims.