From next month, the Children (Equal Protection) Act will become law which will make it illegal for parents to physically discipline their children. New guidance released by the Scottish Government advises that people should dial 999 if they see a child being smacked.

The guidance says: “If you see someone physically punishing their child you should call 999 to report a crime in progress or if a child or young person is in immediate danger”.

It adds: “You can also call the police on 101 if you think a crime has been committed. Another option is for you to contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 to report a crime anonymously. They’ll pass the information about the crime to the police.

“Or you can contact your local council if you are concerned about harm to a child from physical punishment.”

Currently, parents and carers are allowed to use “reasonable” physical force in order to discipline children.

But the law change – which comes into force on November 7th – is aimed at giving children the same protection from assault as adults, as well as bringing Scotland into line with United Nations recommendations.

The Scottish Government, however, has defended the legislation and claimed it will not criminalise mums and dads – but opposition politicians question this.

Liam Kerr MSP, Scottish Conservative Justice spokesperson, said: “This law has the potential to criminalise responsible parents and that’s not something anyone wants to see.

“That’s why we opposed the legislation when it was introduced.

“Hard-working and reasonable parents right across Scotland are concerned about the implications this legislation could have.”

Dr Ashley Frawley, spokesman for campaign group Be Reasonable Scotland who is campaigning against the laws said parents should be “outraged at the dishonesty of the political class”.

READ MORE: COVID crisis will last AT LEAST another year – plans to fight virus

“Instead, they’re using the criminal law – the strong arm of the police and other state agencies – to ensure SNP-approved parenting outcomes.”

John Finnie, Scottish Greens MSP for Highlands and Islands initially put forward the Ban through a private member’s Bill and it soon received support from the Scottish National Party last year.

Arguing for the Bill, he said: “Physical punishment has no place in 21st century Scotland.

“The international evidence tells us that it can have serious impacts on children and that it is not effective.”

A Scottish Government spokesman said in response: “This important legislation gives children the same legal protections as adults – something backed by an overwhelming majority of public opinion.

“The objective of the guidance is to provide information and advice about the Act. Based on experience from elsewhere, we do not expect a large number of prosecutions.”

Scotland will join the likes of Sweden who became the first country in the world to ban smacking in the home when it outlawed corporal punishment in 1979.

Source link

Clickbank Guide & Tools