Wales is set to be the second country in the UK to make it illegal to smack children
This can be seen as a consequence of devolution.
As a recap we can look at the pros and cons of devolution.
What has been the positive impact of devolution?
What has been the negative impact of devolution?
As reported in the paper earlier this autumn:
"An advertising campaign has been launched to make parents and carers aware that it will be illegal to smack children in Wales within months, with a package of almost £3m announced to help keep people who do use physical punishment out of the courts.
From March it will be illegal for anybody in Wales, including visitors, to use any type of physical punishment such as smacking, hitting, slapping and shaking on children.
The government says the law will give children the same protection from assault as adults by removing an archaic 160-year-old legal defence. To help raise awareness of the legislation, a nationwide multimedia advertising campaign called The Sound of Change is being launched."
This means that Scotland is not ploughing a lone tartan furrow, and illustrates how policy change in one constituent part of the UK can be copied elsewhere. What the American Justice Louis Brandeis meant when talking about US states within the federal system acting as laboratories of democracy. But not everyone in Wales is happy about becoming another in 60 country longlist to outlaw smacking. As was the case in Scotland, a majority of voters in the region were opposed to the change.
For example,it was reported that:
Simon Calvert, a spokesperson for the Be Reasonable campaign, said: “Only now, when we are just months away from implementing the ban, do they finally drop any pretence that this ban will not criminalise loving parents. They are criminalising smacking by removing the reasonable chastisement defence from parents. Removing the reasonable chastisement defence doesn’t criminalise beating children. That’s already against the law. It criminalises reasonable chastisement.”
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