Hit-free zones may be coming to Jacksonville

Resolution would ban spanking in city-owned places

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville may soon ban hitting or spanking on all city-owned properties. City Councilman Garrett Dennis has introduced a resolution which would do exactly that. 

Dennis' resolution says the city is invested in supporting safe, healthy and nurturing relationships and environments. The goal is to curb violence and aggression among people in Jacksonville.

"This is the beginning," Dennis said. "I'm just part of a larger plan. Wolfson and Baptist will roll out their hit-free zone soon, but this is the first step for the city."

If the resolution goes through, the city would post signs in public places like city hall or city parks deeming the area a "hit-free zone."

We talked to some people about what they thought about the resolution. "That sounds like a good idea. I'm old-fashioned in that regard," Palmer Davis, a parent we asked about the idea, told us. "I think it's fair enough to spank your child. I don't know about exceeding that but on city property, I don't see where there's any place for that."

The resolution also states violence against children puts them at risk of developing increased aggression, anti-social behavior, mental health problems as well as physical injuries. The resolution would not just ban spanking children, but violence between people of any age.

If the resolution passes, city employees will be trained on how to safely intervene in the hit-free zones.




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