Charities call for ban on smacking children in Scotland

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A group of children’s charities today called for a ban on smacking youngsters to be introduced in Scotland.

The Children are Unbeatable coalition said young people should have the same protection from assault as adults.

In 2002, the Labour/Lib Dem government dropped plans for a ban, after they were deemed unworkable.

The Scottish government said a consultation on proposals for the Children and Young People’s Bill was currently under way.

A spokesman added: “It is already illegal to physically punish children by shaking them or hitting them with any implement.”

The Scottish government said its bill would not go through parliament until some unspecified time in the new year.

Foster carers, teachers and others who work with children are prohibited from using physical punishment such as smacking, but parents are not.

Parents are banned from seriously assaulting children, but anything else is considered “reasonable chastisement”.