KANSAS CITY, Mo. —Children's Mercy Hospital has adopted a new policy that bans hitting of any kind, including parents spanking their children to discipline them.
The hospital has a established what it calls a "No Hit Zone."
"This means that we do not allow hitting of any kind: by adults or children, including parents hitting or spanking children as part of discipline," a hospital brochure said.
Signs are being put up now, and brochures will be passed out to help parents understand.
Hospital officials said the goal is not to tell parents how to discipline their children, but to help parents through some stressful times at a hospital.
"Harsh discipline, like hitting, spanking and yelling, can affect children’s physical, emotional and mental health. Sometimes hitting and spanking can also lead to abuse. By using positive, predictable discipline strategies, we can make this a safe and healthy place for everyone," the hospital brochure states.
If a hospital employee sees behavior that could escalate, they are now directed to address the adult and see how they can help -- maybe a coloring book or bubbles is all it takes. If the behavior goes to the hitting level, a social worker could be called in.
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