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Bill assumes all parents ‘beat’ their children

PRESS STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Mass gathering at Parliament Grounds
Wednesday 2nd May at 12.30pm
www.familyvalues.net.nz

25 April 2007

Anti smacking bill assumes all parents ‘beat’ their children

Organisers of next week’s mass gathering at Parliament Grounds to oppose the anti-smacking Bill are disappointed that John Key has not been able to negotiate a positive outcome with the Bill’s author, Green MP Sue Bradford, but are not surprised.

“Supporters of the Bill are working from the basis that they believe all New Zealand parents are child beaters. The message Government is sending to parents is that they simply cannot be trusted to raise their own children and the State can do a better job. Well we think the vast majority of kiwi parents will disagree,” say the organisers.

Repealing section 59 of the Crimes Act will expose parents to criminal prosecution should they lightly smack their children in circumstances normally deemed reasonable and appropriate. The Bills supporters argue that police will not prosecute in such cases, which raises a fundamental question – why introduce a law they have no intention of enforcing?

“The police and CYF’s will be duty bound to investigate such matters, regardless of whether a prosecution eventuates or not. And it is the judicial system that determines guilt, not the police. So this Bill by its very nature will put all New Zealand parents at the mercy of the State, which is a very scary prospect,” add the organisers.

To that end, a mass gathering at Parliament Grounds is being organised for Wednesday 2nd May at 12.30pm to oppose the anti-smacking bill. Speakers include Bishop Brian Tamaki, Pastor Peter Mortlock, Wellington Reverend Mike Weitenburg and former All Black and Wellington Hurricanes Captain Bull Allen.

Event details can be viewed on www.familyvalues.net.nz

ENDS

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