Posts Tagged ‘Media’

Teachers can use force on kids – cop

Friday, September 5th, 2008

Teachers can use force on kids – cop

By LANE NICHOLS – The Dominion Post | Saturday, 06 September 2008

Teachers should not be afraid to “man-handle” violent children if they pose immediate risks, even if it means leaving bruising, the top youth aid cop says.

Serious sexual offenders as young as 12, who would be labelled paedophiles if they were adults, are preying on young victims, Inspector Chris Graveson says.

Many have themselves been victims of sexual abuse, and youth violence has become significantly worse in the past five years.

But many teachers are too cautious about using force in classrooms to protect children, despite being entitled to under the Crimes Act, he says.

Though forcible restraint might leave bruising on a child – and women bruise more easily than men – it can be necessary if the child poses immediate danger.

“If force is going to have to be used then that’s an actual risk of what can happen.

“You hear people saying, ‘you can’t touch children. You can’t do this, you can’t do that’. [But] if a child’s being attacked, you’re duty-bound to intervene.”

The children’s commissioner’s office rejected Mr Graveson’s comments. It was never appropriate to use enough force to cause bruising, office general manager Gordon McFadyen said.

“This office would be very surprised if it was official police policy to encourage teachers to use a level of force that would leave bruises on primary school children.”

Mr Graveson made the comments to primary school teachers in Wellington yesterday during an Educational Institute seminar on disruptive pupils.

The union, which represents 49,000 members, is due to unveil new guidelines this month for dealing with disruptive or violent children.

Nearly 7000 pupils were stood down or suspended for assaults last year.

Mr Graveson said young people often grabbed things as weapons during standoffs.

“They can cause serious harm to another child with one strike. They’re serious assaults we’re talking about.”

He said the word “force” was police jargon for any physical contact or touching. It should only be used as a last resort and in the best interests of the child.

Educational Institute president Frances Nelson agreed.

“Most teachers will say there are times when they knew they actually had to restrain a child – otherwise that child or other children, or other adults, would get hurt.”

Man to face trial over alleged ‘ear flicking’

Thursday, August 21st, 2008

This is what someone said on an email discussion group:

‘So this is what it has come down to – a father charged with assault for flicking his kid’s ear!

Meanwhile no-one is held responsible for the deaths of the Kahui twins.

Is this the sort of country we want New Zealand to be?

Man to face trial over alleged ‘ear flicking’

2:44PM Thursday August 21, 2008

The Christchurch man accused of assaulting his two young sons will face trial.

In January, Jimmy Mason claimed he was harassed by the police when he was spotted publicly disciplining his four-year-old son.

He claims he only flicked the boy’s ear and that witnesses, including a teacher and an off-duty police officer, overreacted.

Mason was then charged with assaulting both his two sons, aged two and four.

A short depositions hearing took place in the Christchurch District Court this morning at which all the evidence was presented in written form. The media was not permitted to access the evidence.

Four witnesses will give evidence in Mason’s trial, for which a date is yet to be set.


New Zealand continues to follow Sweden

Monday, August 11th, 2008

From Family First NZ Media Release:

“According to the Police Executive Meeting 6 Month Review papers, there have been no prosecutions for ‘smacking’, but the paper (Official police papers) says that “eight ‘minor acts of physical discipline’ events against children were prosecuted with six yet to be resolved.”

This is what Ruby Harrold-Claesson informed us back in March 2007 about Sweden

March 2007

[4] – “There has been no increase in the number of parents drawn into the Swedish criminal justice system for minor assaults in the past 25 years.”

Rebuttal: Before 1978 no parent would have been drawn before the police and prosecutor like the priest who had slapped his 16-yr old daughter. (See Case 1 in my Case Law). Deborah Coddington quoted Prof. Christian Diesen in her article “Anti-smack campaign fails to pack a punch”, ( Diesen said that there are “7000 reports of child abuse per year in Sweden, but only 10 % are prosecuted.” These are statistics from the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention.
Diesen says “only 10% are prosecuted.” He wants to see more prosecutions – even if the parents should be found not guilty.

Recent statistics show that there are 11 000 reports of child abuse per year in Sweden and that there has been a 14% increase between 2005 – 2006. See