The Changing Face of Society

Leo Olivero

Studies confirm the need for a greater emphasis on social change to translate social policies into effective and sustainable actions that make a real impact on the lives of people in society. 

Experts say that social beliefs hinder the willingness and capacity of marginalised people and families to demand and access services and the creation of a more wide-ranging social environment. Some social attitudes contribute in limiting information and access to services for families, this often creates barriers to inclusion of people who may need help promoting the over-use of institutional care that may limit access to appropriate services. 

The latter situation is one that potentially contributes to certain social problems like family related violence and other associated social harms. A disturbing social trend aided by the acceptance by society of serious social problems like substance abuse, which has soared in the past 20 years!

Significant Change in Social Attitudes and Values

However, over the past 40 years I have intensely followed the ever-increasing changes in social trends. Evident, has been a gradual, yet significant change in social attitudes and values. During that time I have not only identified, but also penned a good number of related reports in Panorama on the discriminatory attitudes towards areas of society. The latter situation has unfortunately influenced the mind-set of some policy-makers, certainly the thinking of certain ministers from both political administrations:

“A situation that has negatively reflected the professional effectiveness and the slowing down and development of appropriate and effective social policies and measures to reach those groups in society requiring help”.

As a caring society, we should not leave it just to the politicians, official agencies or NGO’s, but also to the traditional so called nuclear family and all other social composition that today makes up the modern nation that we are. This is where there is an urgent need to communicate the way society understands and respond to the many issues that affect the lives of many. The collective goal should be to ensure immediate change(s) and a sustained effort for future generations of Gibraltarians. Especially the young whose future should really start at home!

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