August 20, 2013
Tough stance on child abuse backed
A Kaitaia GP is backing the need for a radical approach to child abuse.
Social Development Minister Paula Bennett is proposing a new child welfare law that includes putting the onus on parents who seriously abuse or even kill children to prove they are safe to parent again, and barring who commits a serious offence against a child from being allowed near any children.
Lance O’Sullivan says he sees too many cases of abused and neglected children, and a radical approach is needed.
He says being a parent is a privilege which should be taken away if some lines are crossed.
"Can we rehabilitate child killers? Probably not. To be honest, I think you lose the chance. Can we rehabilitate people that bash children and put them into hospital? Possibly, but if I was in charge I would be saying we won't take that chance. Can we rehabilitate people that neglect their children under the stresses they are under, which we know many of our people are and do things that are not ideal in terms of raising out children, well that is something that needs to be discussed, but I think we should be pretty brutal when it comes to people that are brutalizing our kids," Dr O’Sullivan says.
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