Special ArticleThe Acceptability of Caning Children in Singapore The Fine Line Between Discipline and Physical MaltreatmentNgiam, Xin Ying MMed, MRCPCH, MMed (Paediatrics); Tung, Serena SW MBChB, MRCPCH, MScAuthor Information Department of Paediatrics, Khoo Teck Puat-National University Children's Medical Institute, National University Health Systems, Singapore. Address for reprints: Serena SW Tung, MBChB, MRCPCH, MSc, Department of Paediatrics, Khoo Teck Puat-National University Children's Medical Institute, National University Health Systems, Singapore 119228; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Disclosure: The authors declare no conflict of interest. Received June , 2015 Accepted November , 2015 Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics: February/March 2016 - Volume 37 - Issue 2 - p 158-163 doi: 10.1097/DBP.0000000000000247 Buy Metrics Abstract Child maltreatment is a worldwide phenomenon with far-reaching negative consequences, and physical abuse is its most visible and widely reported form of maltreatment. There is a fine line between nonabusive physical punishment and physical child abuse, and where this line is drawn is often influenced by prevailing cultural practices and child-rearing beliefs. This article focus on Singapore—a modern Asian society that remains rooted in traditional attitudes and practices—as a case study in exploring the boundaries. In particular, the local practice of caning (hitting with a rattan cane) as a disciplinary measure for children, the ambiguity of the law on the issue of physical abuse, and the influence of judicial caning on the acceptability of this common practice are examined. Finally, the possible means of safeguarding children and discouraging the use of physical punishment in the home are discussed. Copyright © 2016 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.