Page last updated on 26/9/2011
Parents should be responsible
ALL parents should take responsibility for their children’s anti-social behaviour, Carmarthenshire’s social justice committee believes.
The committee heard that a total of 253 warning letters were sent out for anti-social behaviour in 2010/11 and of these the highest number – 228 – were aged under 18. Incidents recorded ranged from smashing glass, verbal abuse, letting off fireworks in a public place, throwing mud at a car and throwing eggs at people.
In some cases, the parents had not been aware of any problems until receiving the letter, and the vast majority responded positively in trying to manage their children’s behaviour.
Community Safety Manager Kate Thomas said: “We do get a number of calls from parents who are concerned about their child’s behaviour, and often the letter is the first they know of it, which is of some concern. We have discussions with them about what we can do to help the parents or the child. Parents do generally respond well and try to manage their child’s behaviour. The initiative has been successful in that the number of second warning letters needed is very small, with no further anti-social behaviour reported.”
Figures show that only 29 second warning letters were sent out, which shows a success rate of over 88 per cent – significantly higher than the national average.
Any young people who did receive a second warning letter were also referred to the Youth Offending and Prevention Service and visited by their anti-social behaviour worker. Support and intervention work is then provided to address the young person’s behaviour.
Committee chair Cllr Steve James said: “It is very pleasing to note that the vast majority of parents respond positively to the warning letters, however I do share the concern that they weren’t aware of their child’s behaviour previously. Parents must be held responsible and accountable for their children’s behaviour, and it is unfortunate that a minority seem unwilling or unable to do this. We will offer any support we can, but ultimately it is their responsibility.”