Australian doctors call for ban on smacking kids
SYDNEY (AFP) - Australian doctors on Friday called for the smacking of children by parents to be made illegal, saying it was too easy to blur the line between reasonable discipline and abuse.
The Royal Australasian College of Physicians said Australian laws needed to be changed to make all forms of corporal punishment illegal "so the law protects children from assault to the same extent that it does all people".
"Many cases of physical abuse are the result of physical punishment that became more severe than intended," said Susan Moloney, president of the college's child health division.
"And the difficulty with allowing the physical punishment of children is that the line can be easily be blurred between abuse and 'reasonable' force or chastisement that is currently permitted in some states when disciplining a child."