BALEARIC social welfare minister Fernanda Caro yesterday presented a report on the Family Mediation Programme, a service financed by the Minors Board and set up two years ago. Last year, it intervened in 194 cases of separation or divorce. Caro was accompanied by the director general for minors, Aina Radó, and the head of the family mediation centre, Teresa Bibiloni. Caro explained that the service consisted of intervening as mediator in cases of separation or divorce so that couples “can exercise their responsibilities as parents in a climate of co-operation and respect, for their own benefit, but particularly that of their children, who are usually the most affected.” In all 292 children, with an average age of eight, were involved in the 194 cases, Radó said, adding that this figure more than justifies all the efforts made. She said that the programme is aimed at preventing the separation of the parents leaving an indelible mark on their children and stopping the parents using the children as pawns in their discussions. Most of the decisions taken during mediation refer to visiting rights and maintenance payments for the children. The average age of the parents is 35.5 years.

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