Tuesday, October 7, 2003

ATSIC call to smack kids?

Aboriginal parents should be able to smack their children to improve discipline, ATSIC Northern Zone Commissioner Kim Hill said yesterday.

He said Aboriginal parents and family members were intimidated from disciplining children by social workers and government agencies. The lack of discipline could explain the high incidence of anti-social behaviour and levels of crime among some Aboriginies, Mr Hill said. He said politicians and lobby groups had made decisions on behalf of Aboriginal people about how to best rear their children.

The ATSIC commissioner said the high levels of regulation was not unlike the attention focused on Aboriginal families that led to the creation of a Stolen Generation of Aboriginal people. Mr Hill said he did not condone violence and admitted he did not smack his own children, but he stressed he wanted the issue of child discipline debated among Aboriginal people and community leaders.

"Society and lobby groups have made decisions in relation to the rights of Aboriginal children," Mr Hill said.

"I don't support violence generally but then you have Aboriginal children not paying respect to parents.

"Where does society lie with our responsiblities?

"Many of our parents don't necessarily have the authorisation of being a father or mother. That's been taken away by legislation."

Mr Hill said changes in the capacity of parents to discipline children had occurred about the same time as levels of youth crime increased among young Aborigines.

"You can't even discipline your own kids," he said.

"Parents are frightened the people from welfare may come and take kids away from them."

"They're frightened about what teachers at schools would do."

"Look at the gangs."

"It's a direct result of how kids today are disciplined."

Northern Territory News

By CAMDEN SMITH February 07, 2003 posted 7 October 2003


No-Smacking Day for Children in NSW
Patmalar Ambikapathy the Children's Commissioner, HOBART Tasmania spoke to Gregory Kable a caseworker at Justice Action at the Controlling Crime Conference at Redfern in Sydney yesterday and we both realised how parallel our ideas about crime prevention were.

States to cooperate on school curriculums but social skills don't rate? State and territory education ministers say Federal Education Minister Brendan Nelson's heavy-handed threats to school funding will not assist their ambitious initiative to develop consistent school curriculum’s in key subjects. [?]

School Curriculum needs balance? Life Skills and Academic Skills go hand in hand man Colin you need to be the students friends not their judge. Only when you can invite the students into the decision making process will you get an obligation by them to change their behaviour, because you Colin could lead by example and not by power.

NSW education professor warns further commitment needed
The author of a report on the New South Wales education system has urged the major political parties to do more for education in the election campaign.

Fiona Stanley, the children's crusader
It is all about prevention. As Fiona Stanley sees it, with one in five Australian teenagers experiencing significant mental health problems, there are just not enough treatment services to cope with the demand.

Parents call for feedback on social skills
Parents are calling for the same level of feedback on their children's social development as on their academic progress, according to a national survey.

The punishment: Is the 'crime'
The punishment is the crime according to retired chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia Justice Alistair Nicholson. "Smacking a child ought to be seen as assault".

Australian prisons are fast becoming the new asylums of the third millennium. The prison industry is booming, while Australia spends far less on mental health services than similar countries.

The Seed
Respect, you only get out what you have put in. What about Life Skills, Communication and Conflict Resolution. Evolution, perhaps some children and adults miss the whole or part of the course. I did, and so how surprised do you think I was when I realised my parents missed the course as well. Things like Compromise, Win Win, Empathy, and Love. Invisible energy and other skills like public speaking, how to Relate, Assuming, Blaming, Forgiveness, Freedom and Discrimination. This is how I learned respect. If you don't know what it is then how do you relate?