1 Sep 2010

Proposed law change welcomed by American Samoa social service group

2:40 pm on 1 September 2010

A proposed law change in American Samoa, which would mean parents are fined for the delinquent acts of their children, has been welcomed by a local social service group.

Governor Togiola Tulafono has recommended parents be fined up 50 US dollars for the first conviction, and up to 500 dollars for more than three convictions.

Parents could also be put on probation for up to a year if their child consistently breaks a proposed territory-wide curfew.

The director of Catholic Social Services, Cecilia Solofa, says child deliquency is a growing problem, and something needs to be done about it.

"We lack social workers, the Department of Human Resources are overburdened with so many cases they have to deal with, from crimes of all walks of life and so is our office. And if it means this is going to be a wake-up call for parents, then I will support it."

CecIlia Solofa says there's a problem with underage drinking, which leads to all sorts of criminal behaviour.