Slapped down

18th February 2000 at 00:00
Corporal punishment could be outlawed for all pre-school children if the Scottish Executive's proposals on the physical punishment of children lead to a statutory ban in all early years settings. Launching the proposals last week, Jim Wallace, Justice Minister, said ministers did not accept that physical punishment by a parent shuld be completely outlawed. Their preference is to allow "reasonable chastisement" but not "inhuman and degrading treatment", which is forbidden under the European Convention on Human Rights. Save the Children attacked the retention of "reasonable chastisement" as a defence because this is open to wide interpretation.

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