Cape Town - Spanking children could soon see parents being charged with assault, if the Social Development Department has its way.
The department is drafting a new law that would make it illegal for parents to spank their children at home.
Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini said if it was illegal for a husband to hit his wife, then the law should also apply to children being hit by parents.
Dlamini’s spokeswoman, Lumka Oliphant, said the department had a duty to protect children. “We are obligated by the Children’s Act to protect children and this is one area in South Africa that children are not protected. Children are protected everywhere but not at home.”
Oliphant said the proposed law would go through all government channels, including public participation. “We are making amendments to the act and this is part of it.”