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Give parenting back to parents

Judith Collins MP

National Party Family Spokeswoman

02 June 2004

"It's time for parents to take back the child discipline debate," says National Party Family spokeswoman Judith Collins.

"Any sensible person knows that beating their children, or any child for that matter, is unacceptable. But surely the vast majority of parents are still best placed to know what's right when it comes to disciplining their kids.

"It seems heavy handed for this Government to be considering a law change to target a minority of bad parents, when it will have a profound effect on the majority of good parents.

"Parents have rights too and it's about time these were recognised," says Ms Collins.

She is responding to Otago University research that suggests smacking young children causes anti-social behaviour, and impairs academic achievement.

"After putting this issue on the table in the first place, the polls have been telling the Labour Government to put its controversial PC agenda on hold.

"Why else would the Government be spending $10 million on a three-year anti-smacking campaign which doesn't once mention the word 'smacking'.

"No wonder parents are confused about how, when and why they should discipline their children," says Ms Collins.


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