NAPNAP Addresses Utilizing Positive Parenting to Eliminate Corporal Punishment in Position Statement

NAPNAP Addresses Utilizing Positive Parenting to Eliminate Corporal Punishment in Position Statement

NEW YORK, April 26, 2022 – Despite the overwhelming amount of evidence showing the negative effects corporal punishment has on children, nearly half of children ages 0-9 in the U.S. are still subject to it. In a recently published position statement, the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP) reiterated its commitment to promoting child and family health, including advocating for the provision of a safe and positive environment where every child can thrive and develop to their fullest potential. The statement addresses the benefits of using positive parenting strategies in place of corporal punishment and how pediatric-focused advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) can play a role in promoting these best practices.

APRNs are trusted reliable sources of health care and child development information so they are well-positioned to counsel parents and caregivers to discourage the use of corporal punishment and instead promote positive parenting. Positive parenting is “the continual relationship of a parent(s) and a child or children that includes caring, teaching, leading, communicating and providing for the needs of a child consistently and unconditionally.” Children learn to be responsible for their actions through encouragement and setting realistic expectations for both the parent or caregiver and the child. By following this parenting style there is a likelihood to create a safe environment for children to thrive.

“By promoting a positive approach to parenting styles, there is the ability to create good communication practices that allow for safe, stable and nurturing relationships to flourish. When health care providers have these conversations with families, there is the opportunity to protect against maltreatment before it begins,” said NAPNAP President Dr. Andrea Kline-Tilford.

In the position statement, NAPNAP opposes the use of corporal punishment and supports the prohibition of it in homes, schools and all institutions where children are cared for or educated. As experts in pediatrics and advocates for children, NAPNAP compiled a series of recommendations that advocate for childrearing and positive parenting practices that develop caring, responsible and self-disciplined adults. NAPNAP continues to support research that further investigates effective parental discipline techniques and the screening of parents and pediatric patients regarding discipline techniques used at home. We encourage parents, teachers and other caregivers to seek education on positive parenting practices to then participate in public education and the advocacy of changing cultural attitudes surrounding discipline. We recognize that there are varying cultural perspectives and beliefs when it comes to parenting styles and the fact that children in foster care and those with developmental delays or special needs may need additional resources and help on this topic.

To learn more about NAPNAP’s stance on this matter, we encourage you to read the complete position statement in the March/April edition of the Journal of Pediatric Health Care which can be accessed online.

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The National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP) is the nation’s only professional association for pediatric-focused advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) dedicated to improving the quality of health care for infants, children, adolescents and young adults. Representing more than 8,000 healthcare practitioners with 18 special interest groups and 53 chapters, NAPNAP has been advocating for children’s health since 1973 and was the first APRN society in the U.S. Our mission is to empower pediatric-focused advanced practice registered nurses and key partners to optimize child and family health.

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