Matt Downie, from the charity Action for Children, says it's important to dispel fears that parents or guardians could be criminalised for occasional less-than-perfect parenting.
"Scapegoating, humiliation, consistent rejection, children being forced to witness domestic violence... these things are not just bad parenting. They're cruelty," he told ITV News.
It comes as calls are made for the emotional neglect of children to be made a criminal offence.
More top news
Not a bad start to the weekend, bright spells and showers for most of us.
None of the people onboard the boat had been wearing a lifejacket. They were spotted clinging to the hull of their upturned boat.
Staff at seven museums in Wales are taking strike action this weekend over plans to cut their pay.