On 28 May, 80 Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) voted in favour of The Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill after the Stage 1 debate in Holyrood.
The Bill, introduced by John Finnie MSP, aims to end the physical punishment of children who at the moment, have fewer legal protections from assault than adults.
During the debate, Rona Mackay MSP said: “The Bill, and raising public awareness of it, will help to create the culture change that has been seen in other countries, and which has been seen in Scotland around public health issues such as smoking and seat belts. It will clearly show that Scotland does not tolerate violence against anybody, particularly the smallest, most vulnerable people in our society: children.”
Dr Tamasin Knight, consultant in public health medicine, provided evidence in support of the Bill on behalf of the Committee of the Faculty of Public Health in Scotland. Commenting on the successful vote, she said: “I am delighted that the Scottish Parliament has supported the Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill at Stage 1. The Bill is an important step in improving the health and wellbeing of children in Scotland.
“I thank John Finnie MSP for his Bill, and all the MSPs who voted for it at Stage 1. I look forward to supporting the Bill as it continues its journey through the Scottish Parliament.”