Congress urged to revive positive parenting bill amid rising violence vs. children | #parenting

An advocacy group on Wednesday called on Congress to revive its deliberations on the Positive and Non-Violent Discipline of Children Bill to address the “culture of violence” against children during the pandemic.

Child Rights Network (CRN) convenor Romeo Dongeto said the bill will improve protection for the children by allocating government resources and support for positive parenting interventions at the local government level.

“We are now witnessing what child experts have warned in the past – that the culture of violence masquerading as disciplining children can and will have deadly ramifications. Child protection and positive parenting should also be on top of our legislators’ priority,” Dongeto said in an e-mailed statement.

“Back in 2019, we expressed fears that the President’s veto might even embolden parents and other individuals to further inflict violence in the guise of discipline, instead of providing a clear legal framework for our society to change the tradition of inflicting violent punishment against children. Now, those horrid predictions are horribly coming true,” he added.

The measure was passed in Congress in 2019 but was vetoed by President Rodrigo Duterte. 

The child rights organization feared that if there will be no government interventions, children will continue to grapple with abuse at home amid the pandemic.

“These series of worrying incidents highlight how children are proving to also be bearing the brunt of the economic hardships brought about by the long-running community quarantines,” the CRN leader said.

CRN said there is a series of violence against children that were reported in the past few days. The organization cited a case of a father who stored his child into a sack to discipline the minor.

On April 20, police said a teenage mother committed homicide after repeatedly hitting her baby with a rattan stick as a way of discipline, which eventually led to the child’s death.

Also, CRN reported a 12-year-old girl who became pregnant after she was raped by her own father in Lucena City.—Consuelo Marquez/LDF, GMA News

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