Green Bill will outlaw smacking

The Greens keep claiming their bill to repeal S59 will not outlaw smacking. However the Police have said “smacking of a child by way of corrective action would be an assault” is S59 is repealed.

I regard this as a major blow to the credibility of the backers of this bill. They have repeated the line that it is a smear to claim the bill will criminalise or ban smacking.

So is the Office of the Police Commissioner part of this smear? Who do you trust as to whether the bill will ban smacking? A frog or the head of the Police?

Just to repeat my position – I do support amending S59 to more tightly defining reasonable force. I even support Bradford’s bill going to select committee so it can be amended to do just that. But a simple repeal will criminalise and ban smacking – the Police have made that clear. Sure they may not prosecute in every case, but that won’t change the fact it will legally be an assault.

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