A 20-year-old couple in Aisne in northern France have been arrested and charged with child abuse after they posted a photo of themselves beating their baby on Facebook. Prosecutors say the incident, which may have left the child disabled, was caused by the “social misery” of youth unemployment which has rocketed since the Euro was introduced.
The incident took place on Monday when the unnamed one-month-old was said to be injured after being beaten for crying. A Facebook friend of the family spotted the photo and alerted police, who were told that there was an “abnormal” picture of the child. On Wednesday, the police charged both parents with child abuse following a brief investigation.
Sources at Le Parisien reported that the child’s injuries were worse than they appeared to be on the social networking site. The source also claimed the baby was “in a bad state”.
During questioning the father stated that he was unable to cope with the baby crying and that is what prompted the violent response. He explained posting the picture on Facebook saying they had done it “for fun”.
The mother claimed she had not reported her husband’s actions to the proper authorities as she was worried he might walk out. Although the baby is thought to have neurological problems as a result of the abuse, the extent and severity is not yet known.
Although the pair cannot be named for legal reasons they are believed to have faced charges of “abuse of a minor under 15 years causing permanent disability,” already. Raising questions about why they were allowed to have custody of the child at all.
The pair are in their twenties and prosecutors have claimed that the situation is symptomatic of the “social misery” caused by the young ages of the parents and that they are unemployed.
If prosecutors are right that the current levels of youth unemployment are to blame for this situation, it raises the possibility that this child is yet another victim of the implementation of the Euro.
Since the implementation of the Euro young people across Europe have struggled to find employment. The youth unemployment rate in France is currently around 25 percent, a level considered far too high and one that is leading to serious social problems.
In 2001 before the Euro was introduced the French youth unemployment rate was 16 percent, in the years since it has come close to breaking the 30 percent mark.