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Is spanking abuse in Colorado?

On Behalf of | Jul 13, 2021 | Dependency and Neglect |

Parents use a wide variety of methods when it comes to disciplining their children. There is no handbook for parenting, so each person has to determine what is best for their family.

There are, however, some laws in place to prevent parents from mistreating their children or abusing them when they discipline them. Some forms of punishment are abuse or neglect under the law. Then, there are some that can be abusive in some situations but can also be fine depending on the circumstances. One such option is spanking.

Abuse or not abuse

According to CO4KIDS, spanking is not abuse as long as it does not cause physical injury to the child. A parent can spank or paddle their child as a correction method if such punishment follows his or her personal beliefs. However, the act will cross into abuse territory if the parent leaves marks, opens the skin or otherwise harms the child’s body.

Other tips

If a parent wished to spank his or her child, it is essential to avoid doing anything considered abuse under the law. This would include using items to hit the child, shaking the child, punching or kicking. The best method for spanking is a light touch with only the hand. This will avoid the physical harm that turns the act into abuse under the law.

The law tries to balance allowing parents to properly discipline their children and have the freedom to decide how to do that and protecting children from parents who physically hurt them. Parents who have concerns about this type of punishment should consider alternative options.