So the Pope thinks it’s OK to hit children to discipline them. We’ve got news for the Pope.

Hitting children has been totally discredited as a legitimate means of disciplining children, and Pope Francis should know that.

“His statement last week that ‘It’s okay to spank your children to discipline them – as long as their dignity is maintained’ is totally out of tune with the times, and we were gratified that his own sex abuse commission called him out on it,” said Kathy Lynn.

“It is absolutely outrageous that the spiritual leader of 1.2 million Catholics world-wide would advocate violence against another human being. That is a totally inappropriate message for him to deliver to his flock.”

Kathy Lynn, a life-long advocate for ending physical punishment for children, is the chair of the steering committee for Corinne’s Quest which is a campaign under First Call: BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition, a non-partisan coalition of organizations which advocates for improved policies and resources for children and youth.

Our initial response through social media was that it’s disappointing that a person of such influence would be so unaware of the research that absolutely proves hitting children always carries a risk factor. To date, 44 countries have prohibited physical punishment of children because the risks include higher rates of aggression, delinquency, mental health problems and lowered self-esteem. Canada is not on that list of countries.

The Pope should look to the existing research before speaking on the topic. Thankfully, his sex abuse commission criticized his comments saying “there is no place for physical discipline and that the panel would make recommendations to him about protecting kids from corporal punishment.”

One of our concerns is that people will heed the first incorrect statement and miss the second refuting the value of physical punishment of children.
As the Spiritual leader for one seventh of the world population, the Pope has a responsibility to check his facts and talk to his advisors before he advises parents on an important topic such as physical punishment of children.

First Call coalition joins forces with Corinne’s Quest Campaign to end physical punishment of children in Canada

First Call: BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition has announced the affiliation of a new campaign focused on ending physical punishment of children.

Called Corinne’s Quest in honour of Corinne Robertshaw, a lawyer who dedicated the latter part of her life to this issue, the organization’s mission statement is “to promote the raising of children in a positive, non-violent manner and to press for repeal of Section 43 of the Criminal Code.”

“We are delighted to have Corinne’s Quest bring new energy and focus to our efforts to protect children’s right to safety and freedom from violence,” said Adrienne Montani First Call’s provincial coordinator. “Canada has been repeatedly criticized by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child for failing to remove this section of the Criminal Code. Numerous other countries have already moved on this. It’s time for Canada to catch up.”

Kathy Lynn, a parenting speaker and lifelong advocate for ending physical punishment of children, chairs the Corinne’s Quest Steering Committee.

Lynn points out that at various times in our history, Canadian laws have sanctioned hitting slaves, apprentices, prisoners, dogs, wives and children. “Today in Canada, children are the only group left on that list. It is a breach of both their right to security and to equality to have Section 43 still providing a legal defence for the use of force to ‘correct’ children’s behavior.”

She said in addition to the repeal of Section 43, the group also intends to support education for families and parents about the many progressive and effective non-violent ways to raise their children to be responsible self-disciplined adults.

“We are honoured to have an organization of the status of First Call accept us as a campaign under their wing,” said Lynn. “We recognize the Coalition has been a long-time champion of this issue and we’re excited about working together with all the First Call partner organizations and allies across the country to improve children’s safety.”

Raffi joins Corinne’s Quest to work for an end to the physical punishment of children

Raffi Cavoukian, world-renowned Canadian troubadour and author, has agreed to join the steering committee of Corinne’s Quest—an organization dedicated to helping parents discover positive, nonviolent ways to raise responsible self-disciplined children

In announcing his support, Raffi noted that the goals of Corinne’s Quest – to end physical punishment of children and to advocate for enlightened and nonviolent parenting styles – have long been part of his Child Honouring philosophy.

“The principles that underlie my Covenant for Honouring Children include Conscious Parenting and Nonviolence,” said Raffi.  “I am honoured to join in helping Corinne’s Quest to provide a safer, more enlightened and violence-free future for Canada’s children.”

“We are making this announcement near Father’s Day because of the critical role fathers play in child-rearing. It is also a time when all parents can reflect on this important job and consider their parenting styles,” he said.

Raffi founded the Centre for Child Honouring Centre on Salt Spring Island, BC in order to advance Child Honouring as a universal ethic and an organizing principle for societal transformation.

Kathy Lynn, parenting speaker, author and life-long advocate for ending the physical punishment of children, chairs Corinne’s Quest.  The organization is named in honour of Corinne Robertshaw, a lawyer who dedicated her life to seeking repeal of Section 43—a part of Canada’s criminal code that permits the hitting of children under certain circumstances.

Being a loving and caring Dad shows real strength

Sunday morning is special because I receive a message from Mary Charleson who is a marketing educator, speaker and strategist and author of Five-Minute Marketing.

Today she focused on Super Bowl ads and the one that struck me was Dove Men plus Care “Real Strength”.

In September 2014, the discussion about physical punishment of children had a different twist.

After NFL football star Adrian Peterson used a branch to beat his child the question of whether any parent should ever use physical means to discipline hit the airwaves. The action, which he called a whooping and assumed was appropriate discipline resulted in injuries to the back, hands, buttocks, ankles, legs and scrotum of his four year old child. The bulk of the discussion on social media suggested that physical punishment is not quality parenting.

As a result of this event the role of elite athletes as loving parents took the forefront. And today The Super Bowl is going to feature loving and caring Dads.

The Super Bowl is definitely a macho event featuring big strong men. Football is not for wusses.

But off the field these men can be caring Dads.

I am a parenting speaker and author and know that it is never appropriate to hit a child for any reason whatsoever. We proudly talk about being a peaceful nation, about having zero tolerance toward all violence. How can we then permit any form of violence against our children?

Physical punishment is never discipline, it is punishment, and it is punitive. It is defined as the use of physical force with the intention of causing a child to experience pain but not injury for the purposes of correction or control of the child’s behavior.

It always carries a risk. The research shows that hitting children increases the risk of physical injury, impaired parent/child relationship, child aggression, delinquency and poor child mental health.

It also doesn’t work. Hitting children is not an effective way to teach children right from wrong.

So the Pope thinks it’s OK to hit children to discipline them.  We’ve got news for the Pope.

Hitting children has been totally discredited as a legitimate means of disciplining children, and Pope Francis should know that.

“His statement last week that ‘It’s okay to spank your children to discipline them – as long as their dignity is maintained’ is totally out of tune with the times, and we were gratified that his own sex abuse commission called him out on it,” said Kathy Lynn.

“It is absolutely outrageous that the spiritual leader of 1.2 million Catholics world-wide would advocate violence against another human being.  That is a totally inappropriate message for him to deliver to his flock.”

Kathy Lynn, a life-long advocate for ending physical punishment for children, is the chair of the steering committee for Corinne’s Quest which is a campaign under First Call: BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition, a non-partisan coalition of organizations which advocates for improved policies and resources for children and youth.

Our initial response through social media was that it’s disappointing that a person of such influence would be so unaware of the research that absolutely proves hitting children always carries a risk factor. To date, 44 countries have prohibited physical punishment of children because the risks include higher rates of aggression, delinquency, mental health problems and lowered self-esteem. Canada is not on that list of countries.

The Pope should look to the existing research before speaking on the topic. Thankfully, his sex abuse commission criticized his comments saying “there is no place for physical discipline and that the panel would make recommendations to him about protecting kids from corporal punishment.”

One of our concerns is that people will heed the first incorrect statement and miss the second refuting the value of physical punishment of children.

As the Spiritual leader for one seventh of the world population, the Pope has a responsibility to check his facts and talk to his advisors before he advises parents on an important topic such as physical punishment of children.

 First Call expands its mandate with Corinne’s Quest – to end physical punishment of children in Canada

First Call has announced the affiliation of a new campaign focused on ending physical punishment of children.

Called Corinne’s Quest in honour of Corinne Robertshaw, a lawyer who dedicated the latter part of her life to this issue, the organization’s Mission Statement is “to promote the raising of children in a positive, non-violent manner and to press for repeal of Section 43 of the Criminal Code.

“We are absolutely delighted to have Corinne’s Quest join with us at First Call,” said First Call Executive Director Adrienne Montani.  “Their mandate nicely complements our other campaigns to the benefits of Canada’s youngest citizens, and they have assembled an impressive group of activists to their steering committee. Corrine’s Quest is destined to have a major impact on the lives of children in Canada.”

Kathy Lynn, a parenting speaker and lifelong advocate for ending physical punishment of children, chairs the Corinne’s Quest Steering Committee.  “We have a dynamic blend of members on our committee who are working in various fields of child services, plus a number of community leaders who are now retired.” Said Lynn.  “Watch out!  Those retired members have time on their hands and experience in their background, so as a group we believe we can move mountains.

Lynn points out that at various times in our history, Canadian laws have sanctioned hitting slaves, apprentices, prisoners, dogs, wives and children.

“Today in Canada, children are the only group left on that list.”

She said in addition to the repeal of Section 43, the group also intends to educate Canadians on the many progressive and effective non-violence ways parents can raise their children to be responsible self-disciplined adults.

“We are honoured to have an organization of the status of First Call accept us as a campaign under their wing,” said Lynn.  “They are the acknowledged leaders in pressing for the needs of children to have the first call on our country’s resources. We are delighted to join with the First Call family to improve the situation of children everywhere in Canada.

For further information or comment contact:

Adrienne Montani, Executive Director, First Call, 604-877-4932

Kathy Lynn, Chair, Corinne’s Quest, 604-258-9074