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House OKs bill vs corporal punishment on children

August 7, 2011 7:11pm
The House of Representatives has approved a bill criminalizing forms of corporal punishment on children.

The chamber on Wednesday passed on third and final reading House Bill 4455, which promotes positive forms of discipline on children.

The bill was authored by Bagong Henerasyon party-list Rep. Bernadette Herrera-Dy and Tarlac Rep. Susan Yap.

Yap said the measure, when passed into law, will minimize incidents of child domestic violence in the country.

“The bill, when enacted into law, will first and foremost promote a positive and non-violent approach to child discipline among parents, teachers, and other persons entrusted with the guardianship of children," she said in a statement last week.

Among the forms of punishment on children banned by the measure are pulling hair, piercing skin, striking, tying up and imprisonment.

The bill also encourages parents and guardians to instead use positive forms of discipline such as praises, reprimand and responsibility building.

Under HB 4455, any person who will violate any provision of the measure will be imposed with imprisonment of up to six months.

The Child Rights Network (CRN), a group advocating the rights of Filipino children, lauded the passage of the bill.

“It will protect the rights of children against any form of abuse in other settings such as the school, alternative care centers and even at home," Ernesto Almocera Jr. of the CRN Secretariat said in a separate statement.

The bill also mandates the Department of Social Welfare and Development to craft a comprehensive program to promote non-violent discipline of children in the country.

A similar bill authored by Senator Jinggoy Estrada is currently pending before the Senate committee on youth, women and family relations.

The bill will have to be approved by the Senate and ratified by both chambers before it can be submitted to Malacañang for the signature of the President. Andreo C. Calonzo/KBK, GMA News
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