Committee on the Rights of the Child, session 51 (2009)

Recommendations/observations on corporal punishment in the Committee on the Rights of the Child's concluding observations to states examined in the 51st session

Bangladesh

(26 June 2009, CRC/C/BGD/CO/4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 48 and 49)

"The Committee remains concerned about the ineffective implementation of existing laws to prevent corporal punishment and the existence of certain regulations in schools that permit forms of corporal punishment. Furthermore, the Committee is concerned that although the Constitution prohibits cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, children continue to be victims of corporal punishment and other forms of cruel and degrading treatment because of its acceptance in law and in society.

"The Committee recommends that the State party take the necessary actions to stop corporal punishment and other cruel or degrading forms of punishment currently widely accepted and practiced and inter alia:

a) enforce existing laws to explicitly prohibit corporal punishment;

b) raise public awareness of this prohibition in order to transform societal attitudes towards the disciplining of children and to prevent corporal punishment at home, in schools, institutions and workplaces;

c) provide training and advocacy to promote alternative, non-violent forms of discipline in the family, schools, institutions and communities;

d) ensure that all cases of corporal punishment are investigated and perpetrators are brought to justice."

France

(22 June 2009, CRC/C/FRA/CO/4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 6, 57 and 58)

"The Committee regrets that some of the concerns and recommendations it made upon consideration of the second periodic report have been insufficiently addressed, particularly those relating to … corporal punishment….

"While taking note of the assertion by the State party that all forms of physical corporal punishment are prohibited in the French Penal Code, the Committee reiterates its concern that corporal punishment, in particular in the home, as well as in schools, remains widespread, especially in the Overseas Departments and Territories, and that a specific provision to prohibit explicitly corporal punishment against children is still missing.

"Reiterating its previous recommendation and in accordance with its general comment No. 8 (2006), the Committee recommends that the State party explicitly prohibit corporal punishment in all settings, including in the family, in schools, in institutions and other childcare settings, increase awareness-raising in this respect and promote the value of education without violence according to article 28, paragraph 2, of the Convention. In this endeavour, the Committee further recommends that the State party follow-up on the campaign of the Council of Europe to achieve full prohibition of all forms of corporal punishment which it has signed up for."

Mauritania

(17 June 2009, CRC/C//MRT/CO/2 Concluding observations on second report, paras. 40, 41 and 74)

"The Committee is concerned that the Penal Code provides for the imposition of corporal punishment, including whipping and amputation of children. The Committee notes that corporal punishment is forbidden in schools by Ministerial order, however is concerned that it is still widely practised in schools and the family.

"The Committee recommends that the State party revise its Penal Code in order to explicitly prohibit corporal punishment by law and enforce the prohibition in all settings, including in the family, the schools and alternative childcare. It also recommends that the State party conduct awareness-raising campaigns to ensure that alternative forms of discipline are used, in a manner consistent with the child’s human dignity and in conformity with the Convention, especially article 28, paragraph 2, while taking due account of general comment No. 8 (2006) on the Right of the Child to Protection from Corporal Punishment and Other Cruel or Degrading Forms of Punishment. The Committee also recommends that the State party seek technical assistance from UNICEF in order to implement relevant programmes in the school environment.

"The Committee recommends that the State party:

a) undertake a systematic assessment of the situation of street children, including in particular talibes, in order to obtain a good understanding of root causes, magnitude, links with other factors, inter alia, poverty, the situation of marabouts, corporal punishment, exploitation, lack of parental responsibility, lack of access to schools and health facilities…."

Niger

(18 June 2009, CRC/C/NER/CO/2, Concluding observations on second report, paras. 5, 6, 37 and 38)

"The Committee welcomes efforts by the State party to implement the Committee’s concluding observations on the State party’s initial report. Nevertheless, the Committee regrets that some of its concerns and recommendations have been insufficiently or only partly addressed, including those related to … corporal punishment…. 

"The Committee urges the State party to take all necessary measures to address those recommendations from the concluding observations of the initial report that have not yet been implemented or sufficiently implemented, and to provide adequate follow-up to the recommendations contained in the present concluding observations on the second periodic report. 

"The Committee is concerned that the provisions against violence and abuse in the Constitution and the Criminal Code are not interpreted as prohibiting corporal punishment in child-rearing, and that there is no explicit prohibition of corporal punishment in schools and alternative car settings. The Committee is also deeply concerned about all forms of violence inflicted upon children in Koranic schools and their detrimental consequences on children, including physical and mental disability.

"The Committee draws the attention of the State party to the Committee’s general comment No. 8 (2006) on the right of the child to protection from corporal punishment and other cruel or degrading forms of punishment and recommends that it: 

a) explicitly prohibit corporal punishment by law in the family, schools and institutions; and ensure that those laws are effectively implemented and that legal proceedings are systematically initiated against those responsible for mistreating children; 

b) conduct a comprehensive study to assess the causes, nature and extent of corporal punishment;

c) introduce public education, awareness-raising and social mobilization campaigns on the harmful effects of corporal punishment with a view to changing the general attitude towards this practice, and promote positive, non-violent, participatory forms of child-rearing and education; 

d) ensure that an educational programme be undertaken against corporal punishment, insisting both on child rights and the psychological aspects; 

e) ensure recovery and social reintegration of victims of corporal punishment;

f) take appropriate measures to address ill-treatment of children in Islamic Schools and prosecute perpetrators in accordance with the criminal law. "

Romania

(30 June 2009, CRC/C/ROM/CO/4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 58 and 59)

"The Committee notes with appreciation that following the adoption of Law No. 272/2004, the State party has now explicitly prohibited all forms of corporal punishment. The Committee is, however, concerned that given the prevalence of corporal punishment in the home prior to the prohibition, as well as the persistence of attitudes and low level of involvement in known cases by the general population, the practice of corporal punishment persists in the home, The Committee notes that corporal punishment persists also in schools and institutional settings despite the fact that they have been prohibited by law for several decades.

"The Committee recommends that the State party, taking into account the Committee’s general comment No. 8 (2006) on the right of the child to protection from corporal punishment and other cruel or degrading forms of punishment, intensify its awareness-raising and public education campaigns, in order to promote the use of alternative non-violent forms of child-rearing in accordance with the Convention and Council of Europe 2009-2011 Strategy for Building a Europe for and with children."

Sweden

(26 June 2009, CRC/C/SWE/CO/4, Concluding observations on fourth report, para. 39)

"The Committee recommends that the State Party continue and strengthen its efforts to provide adequate assistance to children who are victims of child abuse, including through: ...

f) public awareness-raising and education campaigns on the negative consequences of ill-treatment and preventive programmes, including family development programmes, promoting positive, non-violent forms of discipline."

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