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Toddler spanking protests

CHILDREN'S health organisations have condemned a Christian fundamentalist conference in London where American evangelists are to promote a regime of spanking toddlers with a spatula up to five times a day.

Members of the Community Practitioners and Health Visitors Association and the Parenting Education and Support Forum plan to protest in Parliament against the visit of Gary and Anne-Marie Ezzo.

The alliance is to organise peaceful protests outside the Impact London conference in Westminster Hall next Saturday, where the Ezzos will speak.

The couple have become notorious for their "Bible-based" childcare programme, which encourages parents to hit their children with a plastic spatula which will "inflict pain but not break bones or damage skin tissue".

Parents are advised that they can expect first-time compliance to their orders, even from toddlers. The Ezzos say that smacking by hand lacks sufficient "sting".

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