LETTER OF THE DAY - Don't cloak abuse as discipline
THE EDITOR, Sir:
The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child is urging Jamaica to pass a law to abolish corporal punishment.
Children have the right to be protected from all forms of physical and mental violence. Unfortunately, corporal punishment is widely accepted in our society in the name of disciplining the child. Children do need guidance and correction. A little spanking from time to time may help, but we do not spank. We beat and bruise in an unrestrained manner using leather belts, sticks and anything that we can put our hands on. Parents, frustrated from other reasons, vent their anger towards a child for the simplest of trespasses.
Explore Other Methods
Haven't we seen children with marks on their bodies from parents' beating? Don't we know children who ran away from home because of this violence? What we, as a society, see as disciplining a child is nothing short of violence and abuse! Adults should explore other ways to discipline their children. It is high time to stop abusing them and call it disciplining.
With improved communication and managerial skills, parents can develop a child's personality without being violent. As a first step, Government can provide mandatory counselling to violent parents. This counselling can introduce them to effective parenting skills without beating a child black and blue.
If parents can beat and decide how much they can beat their child, what is the Jamaican Government's national strategy to save our children from abusive parents?