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Police Confirm Prosecutions For Smacking

19 December 2008

Police Confirm Prosecutions For Smacking

Law Confirmed As Spectacular Failure

Latest figures on police activity following the anti-smacking law confirm that police are wasting valuable police time and resources investigating unwarranted complaints against parents, but they also confirm that they are prosecuting parents for smacking.

"There has been a 30% blow-out in total CYF notifications in the last 12 months to just under 100,000, a 27% increase in referrals by police to CYF, and an increase in police investigations for smacking since the amendment. Yet the number of cases warranting further investigation by CYF has declined!" says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

"Most concerning is that parents have been prosecuted or referred to CYF for minor smacking. Our fears of prosecutions have been confirmed.”

"Sadly, the rate of 'child assault' prosecutions is decreasing and actual child abusers are not being caught and the 'roll of horror' of child abuse deaths continues with cases including 16 month old Sachin Dhani, 22-month-old Tyla-Maree Darryl Flynn, 3 year old Nia Glassie, Ten-month-old Jyniah Mary Te Awa, Two-month-old Tahani Mahomed, 3 year old Dylan Hohepa Tonga Rimoni, and 7-year-old Duwayne Toetu Taote Pailegutu.”

“Green MP Sue Bradford is quite correct. She said ‘The epidemic of child abuse and child violence in this country continues – sadly. My bill was never intended to solve that problem.’ We agree.”

"You know a law is completely ineffectual when the proponents applaud it because of its lack of impact and the problem and rate of child abuse remains," says Mr McCoskrie.

Family First is calling on the National government to amend the law so that non-abusive smacking is not a crime, and good parents are not victims of a law which should be targeted more effectively at child abusers.


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