oa Article 19 - Ensuring the protection of children from all forms of corporal punishment : save the children Sweden reassures its commitment : save the children Sweden

Volume 5, Issue 2
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In 1979, the International Year of the Child, Sweden became the first country in the world to prohibit all forms of corporal punishment of children; and as of 1 July 2009 (thanks to legislation, publicity and awareness campaigns) Sweden will have had a ban on all forms of corporal punishment for 30 years. Many countries have since followed suit, and as of March 2009 a total of 24 nations have legislation banning all forms of corporal punishment. While many African countries have made strides to ban corporal punishment in schools and institutions, it remains legalised at home in almost all African countries. The home should be the place where children feel the safest, but often parents betray their sense of safety by abusing children in the name of discipline. In Zambia, for example, a 15 year old girl was severely beaten all over her legs after she slept over at a friend's house without informing her mother. As a result of the severe beating, both her legs had to be amputated, in an attempt to save her life. Tragically she still lost her life. A clear and urgent need thus exists to protect children from all forms of violence, including the most hidden and least acknowledged form of violence - corporal punishment.

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