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Scotland Tonight - Ban on smacking children?

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Published on Jul 18, 2012

Children's charities are calling for a ban on adults smacking youngsters in Scotland.

The group Children are Unbeatable is campaigning for young people to be protected under new laws.

It has spoken out as the Scottish Government seeks views on children's rights ahead of a new bill.

A discussion of the issue took place on Scotland Tonight on Tuesday.

Anne Houston, of the child welfare charity Children 1st, said that Scotland was in the minority in Europe in not having a ban on smacking youngsters in place and claimed that it has not resulted in prosecutions against parents elsewhere on the continent.

She said that the use of smacking can cause emotional harm towards children as well as physical injuries.

John Cormack, of the Scottish Christian Party, told the programme that enforcing such a ban on top of laws already designed to prevent violence towards children would criminalise parents trying their best to raise their children properly.

He stated that he was not advocating smacking as the only option in disciplining a child, but one of a range of measures available to parents.

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