A slap is not the end of the world? – Survey about the social acceptance of abuse

The rights of the children can be violated in many ways, and it often happens. All children have the right to be protected against violence, but still 1 billion children are abused in the world. In Romania, in every hour two children suffer from being abused. Despite that since 2003 there has been zero tolerance against all forms of violence, still many of them are widely accepted, like verbal abuse or a slap with “educational purpose”. What do we call violence? Where does discipline end and abuse start? Who can we turn to in case of abuse? The purpose of “A slap is not the end of the world” research by Hintalovon Children’s Rights Foundation is to survey what our society thinks about abuse, and how can we establish a community for child protection.

You can complete our questionnaire in Hungarian here or in Romanian here.

Many forms of abuse still exist at different levels of the communities: in the families, in the institutes for children, furthermore we can talk about systemic abuse. Violence has several faces, sometimes it is even hard to recognize it, because the people around us tolerate it, or more, they behave violently towards their children. What do we call violence at all? Where does discipline end and abuse start? Who we can turn to in case of abuse? When and where can we report it? What is the difference between reporting and betrayal?

In order for us to be effective against violence, it is important to find a common understanding. We have to agree on what we call abuse in order to be able to take actions against it.

The purpose of the research by Hintalovon Children’s Rights Foundation starting in the spring of 2021 is to survey what does our society thinks about abuse and what are the possibilities to establish a community for child protection. Besides Romania and Hungary, three non-profit organizations are taking part in the research from Albania, Moldova and Slovakia. The purpose of the regional survey is to formulate recommendations by the results that can increase the safety of the children and can help local communities to prevent, recognize and manage abuse against children.

The first phase of the research is an online questionnaire, and asks adults about the forms of violence against children. The questionnaire will survey what society considers abuse, who they think is responsible in managing it, or do they know where to report it. The questionnaire will be available in Hungarian and Romanian between the 15th March and 15th May for adults over the age 18. The research will be also completed with an online survey among children and a focus group locally organized by the assisting countries. The result of the research will be available at the homepage of the Foundation.

Partner organisations in the research: