Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Justice Minister Responds To UN Report On Children

Justice Minister Phil Goff says that Cabinet has noted the views of the United Nations Committee on Children that section 59 of the Crimes Act is inconsistent with the Convention on Rights of the Child.

"Section 59 of the Crimes Act does not sanction the use of violence, excessive force or abuse against children. Those actions are illegal under law. What section 59 does do is to provide a defence, which enables parents lawfully to use reasonable force to discipline their children.

"The Government supports programmes such as 'Alternatives to Smacking' which helps parents to find more effective ways to discipline their children than using physical force.

"It is also examining how countries similar to New Zealand have addressed this issue and sought to comply with the Convention on Rights of the Child.

"However it is not my intention as Minister of Justice to criminalise parents who smack their children without using excessive force.

"It is better to work with parents to improve parenting than to try to impose on people a position which the vast majority would reject. In 1993 a survey by the Office of the Commissioner for Children of 1000 adults found 87% thought that on occasions it was alright to smack a child.

"Over time that view may change. However without doubt the pressing concern of most New Zealanders is not smacking but the serious physical, emotional and sexual abuse which too many children are subject to. It is that issue which Parliament and society must address as a priority," Mr Goff said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news