Cornell University College of Human Ecology Says, “Spanking Should be Discouraged”

The College of Human Ecology at Cornell University collected data and research on the common parenting practice of spanking in our culture. It is estimated that two-thirds of parents use spanking as a parenting tool in the United States. To find their conclusions, they used research from places like the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry as well as the American Academy of Pediatrics, to name only a few. You can find the complete list of references at the bottom of this fact sheet. What they found can be categorized into three major points along with relevant subpoints. These include:

1. Spanking is Ineffective.

  • Time-outs yield same short-term compliance as spanking.
  • Long-term compliance: spanking is not effective.
  • Spanking increases child aggression.
  • Spanking sends mixed messages.

2. Spanking is Linked with Negative Effects.

  • Reducing spanking will also likely reduce risk of child abuse.
  • Negative effects span across cultures.

3. Spanking Violates Children’s Human Rights.

  • Spanking is increasingly disavowed by professional and community organizations.
  • Growing consensus among human rights advocates about spanking.

According to this analysis, the conclusion is:

“Research findings demonstrate that spanking is ineffective and harmful to children. In addition, there is increasing support from prominent professional, religious, and human rights organizations to avoid and eliminate spanking practices. However, spanking is still a common and accepted practice in the United States. Based on the evidence discussed in this fact page, national leaders, community stakeholders, parent educators, and parents should consider finding ways to discourage spanking as a viable discipline strategy.”

To read the complete breakdown and details on this research analysis with peer reviewed references included, [CLICK HERE].

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