Staff Reporter

THE number of adolescents showing violent behaviour within the family circle is on the increase in the Balearics, according to a shock report by Gaspar Rullan, the director of the Balearic government's office for the defence of minors' rights.

He said that this generates “many problems on a psychological level,” as parents try to accept the idea that one of their children has become an aggressor.

He added that there were no exact figures of adolescent violence in the Balearics, but nationwide there had been 5'100 complaints filed by parents who had been attacked by their children in 2004.

But, he said, it was necessary to take “a panoramic view” of the situation, as there is also violence against infants and adolescents.
He said that not all the cases of violence by minors have the same degree of seriousness, but situations in which adolescents injure their parents are cause for concern.

The youngsters can be redeemed, he said, pointing out that “violence is an acquired conduct.” Rullan went on to say that juvenile violence is a phenomenon which not only occurs in the family and at school, it is also present in the sexual area, where 30 per cent of the attacks on minors are carried out by minors.

Adolescents whose families use violence to resolve conflicts are at greater risk to opt for this way of solving problems, as are those who suffer from an excessively permissive education combined with very restrictive messages.

Families must spend more time in communication, he said, although he also criticised excess violence in the media and the lack of positive role models.


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