19/10/2011 15:17 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Smacking Children: Welsh Assembly Members Call For Ban

Father smacking son Jupiter

Four members of the Welsh Assembly have tabled a debate to ban the smacking of children.

They will ask the Welsh Government to stop mums and dads from using the legal defence of "reasonable chastisement" in child assault cases.

One of the motions supporters, Labour AM for Cardiff North Julie Morgan, spoke to BBC Radio 2 to explain why she thinks smacking should be banned, saying: "There is a message which says it's OK to smack, and that message should be removed."

Mrs Morgan told presenter Jeremy Vine: "We're not trying to criminalise parents, we're trying to help them, and we're trying to help children."

However, the Conservative MP for Monmouth David Davies said that law-abiding, caring parents who choose to chastise their children will end up criminalised if smacking were to be banned:
"When you criminalise law-abiding, normal people who chastise their children in the most moderate fashion, you're actually going to make it harder to get the real abusers into court."

Mr Davis has called for clarification as to whether the Welsh assembly can actually stop parents smacking their children, saying the issue should be referred to the Supreme Court if AMs vote in favour of a ban.

Assembly members will debate the move today.

More on Parentdish: Should we be banned from smacking our children?

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Or do you regard it as an abuse of parental power which should be banned country-wide?