Can councils use active acne to combat anti-social behaviour?

Posted on 27 Mar, 2012

After the novel idea of using high pitched sounds only audible to the under twenty-fives in order to prevent them from collecting in groups in certain areas, comes the idea of using teenagers’ propensity to develop acne to discourage them from frequenting certain places.

Cardiff Council is said to be considering replacing the public lighting in the city with lights that will make teenagers’ active acne more noticeable. The hope is that embarrassment will keep the kids moving on, but surely this is a rather indiscriminate way of tackling anti-social behaviour?

Active acne commonly affects teenagers, but more and more adults are also suffering from the skin condition. It can have devastating effects on a person’s self-confidence, whether they are an adolescent or an adult. Using a medical condition that has been linked with depression seems to be a particularly shallow and heartless approach to dealing with our young people.

True, the lights may prevent kids from hanging around on street corners, it may even cause a few to remain holed up in their rooms until the spots disappear, but it could also put some vulnerable individuals at the risk of bullying.