Committee Against Torture, session 47 (2011)

Recommendations/observations on corporal punishment in the Committee Against Torture's concluding observations to states examined in session 47 (31 October - 25 November 2011)

Bulgaria

(14 December 2011, CAT/C/BGR/CO/4-5, Concluding observations on fourth/fifth report, para. 30)

"While taking note that corporal punishment is explicitly forbidden in law, the Committee is concerned by persistent lack of implementation and notes that the Committee on the Rights of the Child has found that children are still victims of corporal punishment in the home, schools, the penal system, alternative care settings and situations of employment. The Committee is concerned that a 2009 survey shows that 34.8 per cent of public opinion is in favour of corporal punishment in childrearing in some circumstances and that 10.9 per cent felt it was acceptable if the parent believed that it would be effective. It is concerned in particular that the use of corporal punishment is substantially higher in institutions for children with disabilities and that a number of cases of physical abuse were documented in the children’s personal files (art. 16).

The Committee recommends that the State party carry out professional and public awareness-raising in order to promote non-violent, positive and participatory methods of childrearing and education; and that the State party take a comprehensive approach to ensuring that the law prohibiting corporal punishment is widely enforced and known, including among children with regard to their right to protection from all forms of corporal punishment. There should be an absolute prohibition of corporal punishment in institutional settings, including for children with disabilities. The State party should provide effective and appropriate responses to corporal punishment, including investigations, prosecution and sanctioning of perpetrators."

Djibouti

(22 December 2011, CAT/C/DJI/CO/1, Concluding observations on initial report, para. 23)

"The Committee notes with concern that the use of corporal punishment as a disciplinary measure in the home is not prohibited, according to the interpretation of the provisions of the Criminal Code (1995), the Family Code (2002) and the Constitution (art. 16).

The State party should consider amending its Criminal Code and revised Family Code to prohibit the use of corporal punishment in all settings, including the home, and to raise public awareness of positive, participatory and non-violent forms of discipline."

Germany

(12 December 2011, CAT/C/DEU/CO/5, Concluding observations on fifth report, para. 32)

"While taking note that corporal punishment is prohibited in all circumstances in the German legal system (sect. 163 of the Code of Civil Law), the Committee expresses concern at the absence of information on the efforts to provide appropriate and ongoing public education and professional training on the prohibition of corporal punishment in all settings (art. 16).

The Committee recommends that the State party actively promote positive, participatory and non-violent forms of education and child-rearing as an alternative to corporal punishment."

Madagascar

(21 December 2011, CAT/C/MDG/CO/1, Concluding observations on initial report, para. 13)

"The Committee is concerned about information indicating that there is a large number of cases of early and forced marriages and of ill-treatment and domestic violence. It is also concerned about the fact that complaints are not lodged due to social and family pressure, despite the existence of Act No. 2000-21, which criminalizes domestic violence and sexual abuse (arts. 2, 12, 13 and 16)….

The Committee encourages the State party to pass a law to prevent and punish marital rape and prohibit corporal punishment of children. It invites the State party to ensure that methods for detecting violence against women and children are included in the training of law enforcement officers."

Morocco

(21 December 2011, CAT/C/MAR/CO/4, Concluding observations on fourth report, para. 24)

"The Committee notes with concern that there is no law in Morocco that prohibits the use of corporal punishment within the home, at school or in institutions that provide child protection services (art. 16).

The State party should amend its laws in order to prohibit the use of corporal punishment in schools, in the home and in centres that provide child protection services. It should also raise public awareness of positive, participatory and nonviolent forms of discipline."

Paraguay

(14 December 2011, CAT/C/PRY/CO/4-6, Concluding observations on fourth-sixth report, para. 26)

"The Committee takes note of the measures taken to prohibit corporal punishment of children living with their mothers in places of detention or in shelters. The Committee also takes note of the information provided by the State party delegation on the existence of a bill to prohibit corporal punishment. However, the Committee is concerned that corporal punishment in the home is still not prohibited (art. 16).

The Committee recommends that the State party explicitly prohibit corporal punishment of children in all settings, including in the home."

Sri Lanka

(8 December 2011, CAT/C/LKA/CO/3-4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, para. 30)

"The Committee notes that, while corporal punishment is prohibited as a penal sentence under the Corporal Punishment (Repeal) Act No. 23 of 2005, it is not prohibited as a disciplinary measure in penal institutions for juvenile offenders, in the home or alternative care settings, under article 82 of the Penal Code. The Committee also notes with concern that, despite the issuance of Circular No. 2005/17, by the Ministry of Education in 2005, stating that corporal punishment should not be used in schools, there is no prohibition in law and its use is still widespread. (arts. 10 and 16)

The State party should consider amending its Penal Code, with a view to prohibiting corporal punishment in all settings and raising public awareness."

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