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Introduction

It is lawful for parents in all Australian States and Territories to use "reasonable" corporal punishment to discipline their children.  The corporal punishment used by parents must be carried out for the purpose of correction, control or discipline, and it must be "reasonable" having regard to: the age of the child; the method of punishment; the child's capacity for reasoning (for example, whether the child is able to comprehend correction/discipline); and the harm caused to the child.

Corporal punishment that results in bruising, marking or other injury lasting longer than a 24-hour period may be deemed to be "unreasonable" and can be considered as physical abuse (see CFCA Resource Sheet, March 2014).

The focus of April’s online survey was to find out how visitors to the Relationships Australia website felt about the use of corporal punishment by parents to discipline children.

Relationships Australia State and Territory websites