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Citizens’ Forum: Spare the rod, spoil the child?

The Story

Citizens' Forum invites child psychologist Dr. William Blatz, Killbarry Nursery School director Joan Hill and parent Roy Stuart to discuss the use of corporal punishment on children. The staunchly pro-spanking Stuart is in the minority, but puts up a good fight in this lively and entertaining debate.

Medium: Radio
Program: Citizens' Forum
Broadcast Date: Oct. 22, 1947
Guest(s): Dr. William Blatz, Joan Hill, Roy Stuart
Host: Neil Morrison
Duration: 44:48

Did You know?

• Corporal punishment was introduced into Canadian law in 1892 as a justifiable act, and was upheld by the Supreme Court in 2004. The 2004 decision added that  such punishment should be limited to children between the ages of two and 12.


• The use of corporal punishment is outlined in section 43 of the Criminal Code of Canada, entitled Protection of Persons in Authority. It reads: "Every schoolteacher, parent or person standing in the place of a parent is justified in using force by way of correction toward a pupil or child, as the case may be, who is under his care, if the force does not exceed what is reasonable under the circumstances."


• The Supreme Court ruling also says children should only be hit with an open hand and never on the face or head. The punishment should not be "inhuman" or "degrading," should cause no lasting bodily harm and should be done as a corrective measure, not borne out of anger or frustration.


• Teachers face greater restrictions. They are allowed to restrain students, but can face assault charges if they strike them. 



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