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End Corporal Punishment In Sri Lanka – Vision 2020 To Hold Public Walk for Real Change on 30th September

11 September 2018 Posted by No Comment

Tuesday, 11th September 2018

Sri Lanka ratified the UNCRC in 1991 but lags behind the rest of the world in eliminating corporal punishment. Even though there are laws in the island banning corporal punishment in schools, such punitive disciplinary procedures are condoned by many educators and parents. It is socially acceptable because they reflect upon their own personal experiences, often glorifying severe punishments they received in their youth. Punishment is justified on the basis that such cruel activities ‘did not harm us, certainly it would not harm our children’.

According to a study commissioned by the National Child Protection Authority on Child Disciplinary Methods Practiced in Schools in Sri Lanka, May 2017, Prof Harendra de Silva et al, ‘mostly, corporal punishment involves hitting, with the hand or an implement. But it could also involve other techniques such as pinching, pulling the hair (De Zoysa, Newcomb, & Rajapakse, 2006), or making the student kneel down or standup. Corporal punishment has been associated with a range of negative outcomes for the child, such as physical injuries (including death) and psychological harm (Ogando Portella & Pells, 2015)’

An iniative named ‘Stop Child Cruelty’ will be leading a nation-wide Campaign that will be done as follows:

  1. Signing a petition that will be made avaliable online this week
  2. A media conference to announce the launch of the Campaign on 25th September at 3pm
  3. A dedicated public Walk for Real Change and handing over of petition and The Pentagon Proposal to HE President –  Sunday, 30th September at 1pm
  4. Conference on Ending Corporal Punishment – Sunday, 18th November

Stop Child Cruelty is focused on Ending Corporal Punishment in schools by 2020, and their patrons include Otara Gunawardena and Sidath Wettimuny. The website states the following:

VISION: Facilitate a healthy a school environment for children so that they are happy, free of fear and free of physical and mental hurt and anguish

MISSION: To vigorously campaign to end corporal punishment in schools in Sri Lanka by 2020

OBJECTIVE: To enforce all authorities responsible for child protection to uphold National and International laws thus ensuring that no child is subjected to cruel and/or degrading punishment in schools, thus allowing children to pursue educational activities in an environment devoid of corporal punishment and in a happy and safe learning environment which, promotes mental wellbeing for children to mature into wholesome caring individuals

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