Can Picafort.—As with previous efforts against child pornography and drug trafficking, the National Police are turning to social networks as a means of combating street vandalism and have created an email account to allow the public to contact them confidentially.

The police's new campaign opens up a channel by which the public can collaborate in supplying information to help tackle vandalism, street violence and attacks on property and services.

To this end, they have established the email address - so that members of the public can, in total confidence, provide photos, videos and information related to those who are responsible for vandalism, sabotage and acts of aggression.

In Catalonia, following altercations during the general strike on 29 March, the interior ministry set up a website with photos of suspected vandalism and sought the public's help in identifying perpetrators, though in this instance the information could not be supplied anonymously.

Internet campaign
In recent days, the National Police have, via their pages and channels on social networks such as Facebook, YouTube, Tuenti and Twitter, sent out messages, images and a video in which the effects of vandalism and violence are highlighted, with particular reference to the most vulnerable sectors of society.

The video, available through, emphasises the damage that can be caused by only a few people, quantifying the costs to the public of vandalism.

For example, to restore a shattered bus shelter, 10'000 euros; a burnt-out rubbish container, 900 euros; cleaning up after a “botellón”, 2'000 euros.
The police have also come up with slogans that are going out over social networks: “destruction by a few for which everyone pays”; “vandals complicate everyone's lives - you can stop them”; “people who don't respect public places and services - their savagery harms you”; “the damage from street hooliganism makes you suffer, makes everyone suffer”.

The director of the police, Ignacio Cosidó, has explained that the launch of this campaign marks “the importance given to making the public recognise that the continuous and serious harm through the irresponsibility and a lack of consideration by a few affects the daily lives of everyone”.

He has also emphasised the great benefit of social networks not just for informational purposes but also for enabling the public to collaborate and join in with fighting vandalism “that causes so much damage to society and its citizens”.

The move by the police coincidentally comes a few weeks after the mayor of Soller's car was torched and some 13 parking meters in the town were also vandalised and set a light by a 20-year-old male who is now on remand in Palma prison. A juvenile, now serving an ASBO, apparently helped him torch the car.