Thursday, May 31, 2007

Only 18% of Kiwis Support ‘Anti-Smacking’ Bill

Only 18% of Kiwis Support 'Anti-Smacking' Bill

Research New Zealand has released a poll today showing that only 18% of kiwis agree or strongly agree with Sue Bradford and the Prime Minister's anti-smacking bill currently before parliament.

"Supporters of the bill have always tried to argue that the 14 polls done over the past 2 years, and averaging 84% support for section 59, are not accurate," says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ."Yet here is yet another independent poll showing that 82% of kiwis either strongly disagree or disagree with the bill, or have no clear support for the 'anti-smacking' bill."

This is also backed up by a text message poll run by the Bay of Plenty Times over the weekend which found a staggering 94.6% opposing the legislation.

"The message is clear to our politicians," says Mr McCoskrie. "Reject the bill, don't criminalise our good parents, come back to the drawing board, and let's tackle the real causes of child abuse as identified by UNICEF reports, CYF reports and national and international research – namely family breakdown and dysfunction, drug and alcohol abuse, and poverty and stress."

Family First calls on all MP's to vote to defend the role of parents and the well-being of children while tackling the actual causes of child abuse.


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Smacking Law Hits Labour in Polls Because of Inconsistency


The Prime Minister, in her response to calls to lower the alcohol limit for driving, has said what many parents and family groups argued should be the approach to the anti-smacking bill.

In response to a question this morning on Newstalk ZB as to why won't the government consider lowering the alcohol limit on drink driving, the PM's response was "…I am highly conscious of not drinking before driving. I think most people are. And the question you have to ask is are you then going to bring in a rule that fundamentally changes it for highly law abiding people when the
problem is with those who drink far too much."

We agree.  Kiwi parents would agree.

"This was the exact argument used by Family First regarding the anti-smacking bill, which has effectively targeted law abiding parents, while ignoring the root causes of child abuse," says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First. "Why was the PM's logic not used in the smacking debate?" "As a result of shoddy and undemocratic lawmaking, 'highly law abiding parents' are now going to be criminalised, and threatened with investigation and intervention by CYF, because of a 'fundamental' law change that has no scientific support or international experience backing it up."

"If we are serious about reducing our abysmal rate of child abuse, the target should be parents who physically and emotionally abuse their children or neglect their needs – a far cry from a smack on the bottom by a loving parent."

"The Prime Minister should be consistent in her approach to law making," says Mr McCoskrie.