Opinion: Damages

POSTED: 06/26/12 12:19 PM

We like food for thought, if only because it doesn’t make us obese, but we also like outside ideas because they offer a fresh perspective on matters we are dealing with on our island.
In the multicultural society called the Netherlands, it took the ethnic Turkish parliamentarian Coskun Çörüz, a member of the Christian Democratic Appeal, to come up with an initiative-law that makes parents responsible for damages their kids from the age of 14 cause to the property of others. A majorityu in the parliament supports the inititive. Young vandals have one thing in common: they usually don’t have a dime to their name. If they vandalize property, the victims or their insurance company are left with the damages.

Making parents responsible for the damages their children cause to others seems like an out-dated idea, but it might work, not only in the Netherlands but also in St. Maarten.
What we assume this legislation will do, is giving parents a vested interest in the way their children behave.
That is, unless insurance company jump into the fray and start offering parents an insurance package to cover the potential damages their offspring might inflict on others at some unspecified moment in the future. If that happens, Çörüz’s initiative remains a dead letter.

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