BBC News 31 July 09
Voting has begun in New Zealand in a controversial referendum on whether a law prohibiting the smacking of children should be abolished. It’s the country’s first citizen-initiated referendum. New Zealanders have three weeks to answer the question: ‘Should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence?’
A BBC correspondent says many parents believe smacking is acceptable and that politicians should not tell them how to bring up their children, but others feel children are entitled to the same protection as adults. Prime Minister John Key described the question as ridiculous and the government said the referendum’s result would not be binding.
INCLUDES AUDIO INTERVIEW OF PARENT PROSECUTED FOR LIGHT SMACK ON LEG