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13 June, 2024
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Cyprus grapples with challenges in youth behavior

From school violence to vandalism, nation reflects on prevention efforts and enforcement tactics


After recent violent incidents in schools and a surge in vandalism during the Easter holidays, concerns about youth behavior have reignited public debate in Cyprus, according to a report by Pavlos Neophytos in this Sunday's print edition of Kathimerini.

The latest incidents prompt questions about the government's response to such behaviors and whether enough is being done to prevent and address youth delinquency.

Efforts to tackle the problem are underway, with initiatives like the introduction of neighborhood social workers.

Experts and officials interviewed by "K" acknowledge that current societal issues are rooted in past failures in prevention efforts. Institutions like schools, Social Welfare Services, and the Police share responsibility for not addressing these issues earlier.

Efforts to tackle the problem are underway, with initiatives like the introduction of neighborhood social workers. These workers aim to identify and address local issues and provide support to individuals or families in need.

However, criticism is directed towards the education system, with concerns raised about exclusionary practices and a lack of support for marginalized students. Experts stress the importance of early intervention and community empowerment to reduce antisocial behavior in the long term.

The Ministry of Education has started implementing measures, including school-specific action plans and training sessions on bullying issues. Additionally, some kindergartens are targeted for violence and delinquency prevention programs.

In terms of enforcement, municipalities seek to install cameras in public places, despite objections from data protection authorities. Meanwhile, schools are enhancing security measures, including the installation of cameras, perimeter lighting, and alarm systems.

The Police emphasize the role of parents and teachers in prevention efforts, calling for greater accountability. They also advocate for legislative changes to hold parents responsible for their children's actions.

While some advocate for stricter measures against delinquent youth, others stress the importance of investing in prevention efforts. They argue that while enforcement measures may yield immediate results, long-term prevention efforts are more effective and sustainable.

As Cyprus grapples with these challenges, there is a growing consensus on the need for a comprehensive approach that addresses root causes and invests in long-term solutions.

Cyprus  |  society  |  education  |  vandalism

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