Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill


About the Bill

The Bill was introduced in the Scottish Parliament on 6 September 2018.  The purpose of the Bill is to end the physical punishment of children by parents or those with caring responsibility for a child. The Bill would remove the defence of “reasonable chastisement” which can be used to justify using physical force on a child.

Read the Bills and Accompanying Documents

Current Status of the Bill

This Members Bill was introduced by John Finnie MSP on 6th September 2018. The Bill received Royal Assent on 7 November 2019.

Stage 1

The Equalities and Human Rights Committee was designated the lead Committee for the Bill.


The Committee took evidence on the Bill on:

  • 28 February
  • 7 March
  • 15 March (Portree, Skye)
  • 21 March
  • 28 March

Stage 2

Stage 2 took place on 20 June 2019.

Stage 3

Stage 3 took place on 3 October 2019.


The following privacy notice sets out how the Parliament and the Committee process personal data in a way that complies with the GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018:

The Committee's call for views ran from 2 November 2018 to 25 January 2019.

The Committee received a large number of submissions which contain information about a third party (for example, parents, children, or friends). To protect the privacy of those people, or to prevent them from being identified, these submissions are being published anonymously. If you do not see your submission, or it appears in a way which you were not expecting, please get in touch with the Clerking team by telephoning 0131 348 5048 or emailing [email protected].

Supplementary Submissions

Visits and Events

Notes of Visits

Visit to Skye

The Committee held a meeting in Portree on Skye on 15 March at the Fingal Centre. Notes of visits are below:

Scottish Youth Parliament

Meeting in a Box! 

From December - March we encouraged people around Scotland to host a Meeting in a Box!. The Meeting in a Box! contained tools to facilitate a conversation about the Bill and send the thoughts of a community group to the Committee.  

Responses received:

Full responses:


The Committee received a letter from the Minister for Children and Young People in response to the points raised in the Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill Stage 1 report.

Minister for Children and Young People, 23 May 2019 (334KB pdf)

The Committee received correspondence from the Minister for Children and Young People in response to the costings of the Children (Equal Protection from Assault) (Scotland) Bill.


The Committee published its Stage 1 Report on 16 May 2019.



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