Hooded silhouettes lingering in shop doorways and beneath bus shelters carry a potent message of menace for most adults. For Britain has become a place increasingly fearful of its teenage population, a forthcoming report will warn.
Britons are more likely than other Europeans to blame young people for antisocial behaviour, according to extracts from a study by the Institute for Public Policy Research released yesterday, and they are also less inclined to intervene if they find teenagers causing trouble.
The study finds that 65% of Germans, 52% of Spanish and 50% of Italians would be willing to intervene if they saw a group of 14-year-old boys vandalising a bus shelter – but just 34% of Britons would be willing to do the same. Thirty-nine per cent of Britons would avoid a confrontation for fear of physical attack.
Fear of teenagers is growing in Britain