"Within the special context of the parent and child relationship, a parent may legitimately decide to use moderate, reasonable chastisement
. The law has long respected this as part of the authority which parents have in relation to their own children.
A vote on ending parents' legal defence of "reasonable chastisement
" could be passed by peers today.
MPs and peers say, in reports released by two government committees, that a "reasonable chastisement
" defence is misused by abusers in court and should be closed off.
A Commons Health Select Committee and a cross-party joint committee on human rights will recommend that the defence of "reasonable chastisement
" should be scrapped to prevent child abuse.
Mary Marsh criticised them for continuing to allow children to be hit by their parents with sticks and belts under the protection of the ``reasonable chastisement
Maggie Mellon, of children's charity NCH Scotland, said: "We do not agree that children have sufficient protection under the current law, which allows for `reasonable chastisement
"We don't have a manifesto commitment to move forward with removing the defence of reasonable chastisement
in the law on common assault."
He said: ``The amendment tabled by Lord Lester would not criminalise parents for smacking, but would restrict the use of the defence of reasonable chastisement
Mrs Kinnock's letter concerning banning parents' rights to reasonable chastisement
of their children suggests that most children live in constant fear of being beaten by their parents.
And they called for the removal of the legal defence of "reasonable chastisement
" that allows parents to smack their own children without fear of prosecution for assault.
The committee's finding adds weight to the argument that parents should be stripped of the legal defence which allows them to administer 'reasonable chastisement
' without fearing punishment in court.
They will recommend that the defence of `reasonable chastisement
' - the legal shield which allows parents to use physical force - should be scrapped, as it could be used to justify violent behaviour towards children.
MPs and peers say in two influential reports that the "reasonable chastisement
" defence that is often relied upon by abusers in court should be closed off.
MINISTERS were today being called on to drop the Victorian defence of ``reasonable chastisement
'' to excuse smacking a child.
Sadly and inexcusably, there are some parents who go too far and "reasonable chastisement
" becomes abuse and assault.