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The law and child safety

Can you physically punish children

The law in Scotland protects children and young people from any punishment that is too harsh, involves much force or harms them.

You should not discipline your child in ways that involve hitting them, or beating them.  It is also again the law to punish children in dangerous ways such as shaking, hitting on the head or using something to hit a child with such as a shoe, a cane or slipper.

Police and social work will investigate any signs that a child has been physically abused.  

If you find you are losing your temper and finding it difficult to deal with your child's behaviour in a positive way, get advice from Parentline Scotland.

You could also check out Parenting across Scotland for more information on particular topics.