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Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Bill

A Welsh Government Bill, introduced by Julie Morgan AM, Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services. The Business Committee has remitted the Bill to the Children, Young People and Education Committee.

About the Bill

The purpose of the Bill is to abolish the common law defence of reasonable punishment so it is no longer available in Wales to parents or those acting in loco parentis as a defence to assault or battery against a child.

The defence currently applies in respect of both the criminal and civil law. Under the criminal law, it applies in respect of the common law offences of assault and battery; and under civil law, in respect of the tort of trespass against the person.

The Bill is intended to support children’s rights by prohibiting the use of physical punishment, through removal of this defence. The intended effect of the Bill, together with an awareness-raising campaign and support for parents, is to bring about a further reduction in the use and tolerance of the physical punishment of children in Wales.

Further detail about the Bill can be found in its accompanying Explanatory Memorandum.

The Welsh Government has also published a web page for the Bill which provides further information and details of the impact assessments undertaken.

Current Stage

The Bill is currently at Stage 1. An explanation of the various stages of Assembly Bills is available in the Guide to the Stages of Public Bills and Acts.

Record of Passage in the National Assembly for Wales

The following table sets out the dates for each stage of the Bill’s passage through the National Assembly for Wales.

Stage

Documents

Bill introduced: 25 March 2019

Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Bill, as introduced (PDF 59KB)

Explanatory Memorandum (PDF 1MB)

Presiding Officer’s Statement: 25 March 2019 (PDF 59KB)

Business Committee - Timetable for consideration of the Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Bill (PDF 25KB)

Letter from the Chair to the Business Committee (14 March) – proposed timetable (PDF 77KB)

Revised Timetable (PDF 43KB)

Bill Summary (PDF 775KB)

Bilingual Glossary (PDF 87KB)

Stage 1: Committee considerations of general principles

Committee Stage 1 Report

The Committee laid its report on 2 August 2019.

Response by the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services to the Children, Young People and Education Committee's Stage 1 Report  -  13 September 2019

Public Consultation Responses

In addition to the Committee’s own analysis of the consultation responses, the Office for National Statistics was also commissioned to undertake independent data science analysis of the responses, to identify the main issues raised by respondents.

Handwritten Letters

Committee consideration

Schedule of oral evidence (Version 1) (PDF 45KB)
Schedule of oral evidence (Version 2) (PDF 47KB)

The Children, Young People and Education Committee considered the Bill on the following dates:

Date and Agenda

Purpose of meeting

Transcript

Senedd.TV

28 March 2019

Consideration of Approach to Stage 1 Scrutiny

(Private)

(Private)

02 May 2019

Evidence sessions

02 May 2019

Transcript

View meeting of 02 May

Additional Information following the session:

Be Reasonable Wales

Sally Gobbett, Parent Campaigner

Equal Protection Network Cymru

Deputy Minister

08 May 2019

Evidence sessions

08 May 2019 Transcript

View meeting of 08 May

16 May 2019

Evidence sessions

16 May 2019

Transcript

View meeting of 16 May

Additional information following the session:

Police Liaison Unit

BASW Cymru

22 May 2019

Evidence session

22 May 2019

Transcript

View meeting of 22 May

Additional information following the session:

Swansea Bay University Health Board

6 June 2019

Stakeholder event

(Private)

(Private)

6 June 2019

Evidence session

6 June 2019

Transcript

View meeting of 6 June

12 June 2019

 

Evidence session

12 June 2019

Transcript

View meeting of 12 June

Additional information following the session:

Deputy Minister

Stage 1 Correspondence

Welsh Government

Letter to the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services (5 April 2019) – seeking clarification on focused question ahead of oral evidence session (PDF 154KB)

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services (25 April 2019) – response to the Committee’s request for further information ahead of the session on 2 May (PDF 838KB)

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services - additional information following the evidence session on 2 May (31 May 2019) (PDF 375)

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services (5 April 2019) – further information in relation to social services data (PDF 285KB)

Letter from the Chair to the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services - request to CAFCASS Cymru for information (20 May 2019) (PDF 105KB)

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services - CAFCASS Cymru's response (4 June 2019) (PDF 352KB)

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services - Research report on public awareness and opinion of the Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Bill (5 June 2019) (PDF 806KB)

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services – further information from the meeting on 12 June (1 July) (PDF 437KB)

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services  - Children’s awareness (12 July) (PDF 266KB)

Children and Young People

Letter from the Welsh Youth Parliament (1 May 2019) (PDF 698KB)

Information from Lleisiau Bach Little Voices (PDF 401KB)

Letter from the Children’s Commissioner for Wales – Children’s awareness (11 July) (PDF 548KB)

Timetable

Letter from the Chair to the Business Committee - request for an extension to the Stage 1 report deadline (16 May 2019) (PDF 76KB)

Revised Timetable (PDF 43KB)

Targeted written evidence – responses received

 

Ministry of Justice (PDF 272KB)

Family First New Zealand (PDF 7MB)

New Zealand Children’s Commissioner (PDF 156KB)

Sentencing Council for England and Wales (PDF 349KB)

 

Targeted written evidence – responses not received

 

Magistrates Association

Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service

Teaching unions

United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child

The Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committee considered the Bill on the following date:

 

Date and Agenda

Purpose of meeting

Transcript

Senedd.TV

03 June

Evidence session

3 June 2019 Transcript

View meeting of 3 June

 

Letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services - 18 June 2019 (PDF 343KB)

 

The Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committee laid its report on the Bill on 2 August 2019.

 

The Finance Committee considered the Bill on the following date:

 

Date and Agenda

Purpose of meeting

Transcript

Senedd.TV

09 May 2019

Evidence sessions

09 May Transcript

View meeting of 9 May

 

The Finance Committee laid its report on the Bill on 2 August 2019.

 

Response by the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services to the Finance Committee's Stage 1 Report  -  13 September 2019 (PDF, 680KB)

 

Stage 1: Debate in Plenary on general principles

The Stage 1 debate is scheduled to take place in Plenary on Tuesday 17 September 2019.

Financial Resolution

In accordance with Standing Order 26.68 the Presiding Officer has indicated that a financial resolution is required for this Bill.  Further information about financial resolutions is available in section 3 of the Guide to the scrutiny stages for Public Bills.

Stage 2: Committee consideration of amendments

This Stage has not yet been reached.

Stage 3: Plenary consideration of amendments

This Stage has not yet been reached.

Stage 4: Passing of the Bill in Plenary

This Stage has not yet been reached.

Post-stage 4

This Stage has not yet been reached.

 

Contact information
Clerk: Llinos Madeley
Phone: 0300 200 6352

Postal address:
National Assembly for Wales
Cardiff Bay
Cardiff     CF99 1NA
Email:
SeneddCYPE@Assembly.Wales

Business type: Bill

Reason considered: Government Business;

First published: 25/03/2019

Decision due: Meeting Date by Children, Young People and Education Committee

Documents

Consultations

 

 

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