Thursday March 22, 2018   Last updated 21:15PM

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Will beating children at school fix the Far North?

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Will beating children at school fix the Far North?

The chair of the National Party's Kaikohe branch, Alan Price, has responded to a surge in youth crime and public disorder by suggesting that corporal punishment needs to be brought back into schools in the Far North.

Price told Radio New Zealand , "You can't raise children without discipline and we're getting into the situation where we've got an uncontrollable rat race that you can't do anything with in this country.

"Until we stand up to it and do something about it and change the law that means you can discipline somebody for something they do wrong - to me it is a form of child abuse not to raise a child with discipline."

"I think we've got a bigger drug problem in this country than we know about and I think that's what's causing the dysfunctional families, the anger, the theiving that's going on to get money for drugs."

Price has every right to be concerned about the generational under-investment, the poverty and the lack of strong community leadership, but to think that any of what is rotting the Far North away will be solved by beating children at School looks like trying to put out a fire with petrol.

Discipline requires more than the fear of being beaten up, it requires hope that putting in the hard work now will pay off in the future.

The Far North is suffering from a lack of hope and hitting teenagers won't provide that.

You can't rewind the decades and decades and decades of neglect by reintroducing corporal punishment, to suggest you can means you have no idea what you're talking about or you are playing to people's fears in an election year.

What the Far North desperately needs or more training courses, better education, better mental health services, more jobs and better infrastructure. There are community agencies and groups in the Far North crying out for more resourcing yet all the Government provide are more Police.

More Police is as much of a solution as hitting teenagers.

If we are serious about tackling these social issues then we need to actually spend time understanding why they have come about before we rush headlong into knee jerk solutions which might end up exacerbating the problem.

More healing, more grace, more compassion and more hope will work.

Extra cops and bashing kids won't.


Martyn Bradbury

Editor -

Radio Waatea and it's Board would like to advise that the opinions posted are those of Martyn 'Bomber' Bradbury and not the views of Radio Waatea, it's Management or it's Board.

Copyright © 2017, UMA Broadcasting Ltd:

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