Troublesome teens must be taken to task
IT has come to something when people feel that security is needed in public parks and children’s playgrounds.
Calls were made in recent days for security to be installed at a park in Carlow after a gang of youths reportedly attempted to set a young boy’s hair on fire.
The cost of this could run to €70,000 per year but a much more effective way would be for parents to pay more attention to where their teenage kids are and what they are getting up to.
Carlow isn’t the first county to experience such anti-social behaviour in areas designated for community use, and primarily for younger children.
This is an issue across the country. Only recently there were reports of glass melted into slides. The damage this could cause to a young child doesn’t even bear thinking about.
The problem arises when older youngsters congregate around playgrounds where they have no business in the first place. These ‘anti-social’ people of course, should not be there causing trouble or intimidating or in fact assaulting others, yet they are.
So where do their parents think they are when they are down the town causing trouble?
Let me be clear, I’m not suggesting that every group of young people that hangs out on the summer holidays is up to no good - but a small element is - and this is unacceptable.
Playgrounds, put in to communities, either through local government funding or monies raised by those in the community - are not designed to be a hangout for those in their late teens - and they do not serve as a drinking and smoking den after hours.
And, every time a piece of equipment gets damaged or defaced, the taxpayer once again must pick up the tab.
Call them young, reckless or just bored, but the small percentage of trouble makers who engage in such behaviour must be called on their actions.
Surely there are more ways they can entertain themselves and have fun without causing hassle for others or making a dent into both local authority and Garda resources.
An incident such as experienced in Carlow by that child will not be easy to get over and while it is one thing to hang around being a nuisance, it is quite another to attempt to assault a child in this fashion.
A common antisocial behaviour problem is arising when older youngsters congregate around playgrounds where they have no business in the first place.