Committee on the Rights of the Child, session 63 (2013)

Recommendations/observations on corporal punishment in the Committee on the Rights of the Child's concluding observations to states examined in the 63rd session

Armenia

(8 July 2013, CRC/C/ARM/CO/3-4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 24 and 25)

"The Committee is concerned at the information that children in closed and partially closed institutions, in particular in Vanadzor Children’s Home and at the Vanadzor Care and Protection Centre (Boarding school) No 1 are subjected to ill treatment and violence. It is also concerned that although both the Family Code and the Rights of the Child Act of 1996 have provisions against corporal punishment, there is a lack of enforcement mechanisms and the State party’s legislation does not provide sanctions in cases of violation.

"The Committee urges the State party to take urgent measures in closed or partially closed institutions, in particular in Vanadzor Children’s Home and at the Vanadzor Care and Protection Centre (Boarding school) No 1, to investigate the individual cases of violence as well as prosecute and punish perpetrators. Furthermore, it recommends that the State party prohibit the use of corporal punishment in all settings and provide for enforcement mechanisms under its legislation, including appropriate sanctions in cases of violation. It further recommends that the State party strengthen and expand awareness-raising and education programmes and campaigns, in order to promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child rearing and discipline, and accelerate the adoption of the draft Law on Domestic Violence."

Guinea-Bissau

(8 July 2013, CRC/C/GNB/CO/2-4, Concluding observations on second-fourth report, paras. 36, 37, 62 and 63)

"The Committee notes that, although corporal punishment is prohibited in schools, it remains lawful in the home and alternative care settings. The Committee regrets that the State party report provides limited information on corporal punishment.

"Taking due note of 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, the Committee recommends that the State party:

a) consider enacting legislation to explicitly prohibit corporal punishment of children in all settings, including within the family and in alternative care settings;

b) ensure that laws prohibiting corporal punishment are effectively implemented and that legal proceedings are systematically initiated against those responsible for violence against children; and

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 as alternative forms of discipline.

"The Committee takes note of the progress in access to education with a net attendance ratio (NAR) that increased by 26 percentage points between 2002 and 2010. Nevertheless, the Committee is concerned that: ...

e) there are cases of corporal punishment and bullying in schools….

"The Committee recommends that the State party: ...

f) initiate regulations banning all forms of violence in schools, and establish a complaints mechanism to report incidents of corporal punishment as well as bullying, peer violence and harassment, and introduce non-violent forms of discipline as an alternative to corporal punishment…."

Israel

(4 July 2013, CRC/C/ISR/CO/2-4, Concluding observations on second to fourth report, paras. 37 and 38)

"The Committee welcomes the full prohibition of corporal punishment in all settings in the State party as well as the Compulsory Education (Physical Violence Reporting Rules) Regulations No. 5770-2009 which obliges Principals of educational institutions to report in writing any occurrence of physical violence between an educator and a pupil. The Committee is however concerned about the high proportion of students reporting that they have experienced physical and emotional maltreatment, and that corporal punishment continues to be inflicted on children in detention. 

"In light of its 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 recommends that the State party take effective measures to eliminate corporal punishment and its psychological consequences including through the implementation of public and professional awareness raising programmes including campaigns. The State party should also promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline as an alternative to corporal punishment and establish child-friendly complaints mechanisms."

Rwanda

(8 July 2013, CRC/C/RWA/CO/3-4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 27 and 28)

"The Committee notes that Law No. 54/2011 prohibits some violent forms of punishment against children; however, the Committee is gravely concerned that: 

a) the use of corporal punishment is considered appropriate in education and is still widespread in all settings, including families and schools;

b) the draft ministerial order on general regulation of preschool, primary and secondary education, prohibiting corporal punishment in school has not yet been adopted;

c) there is an absence of legislation that explicitly prohibits corporal punishment in alternative care settings; and

d) parents have a “right of correction” under article 347 of the 1988 Civil Code, which may lead to corporal punishment. 

"The Committee urges the State party to:

a) develop the National Plan of Action to fight violence against children, based on the recommendations from the national conference held in 2011;

b) introduce sustained public education, awareness-raising and social mobilization programmes, involving children, families, communities and religious leaders, on the harmful effects, both physical and psychological, of corporal punishment, with a view to changing the general attitude towards this practice, and promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline as an alternative to corporal punishment in the family, schools, alternative care and penal institutions; 

c) immediately adopt and implement the ministerial order on prohibition of corporal punishment in schools and widely publicize the order in all educational institutions; 

d) explicitly prohibit corporal punishment of children in alternative care settings; 

e) immediately repeal all provisions that authorize corporal punishment, including the “right of correction” in the Civil Code; and

f) ensure adequate follow-up measures to all corporal punishment."

Slovenia

(8 July 2013, CRC/C/SVN/CO/3-4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 37 and 38)

"The Committee reiterates its previous concern about the absence of a legal prohibition of corporal punishment within the home (CRC/C15/Add.230, para 40). While welcoming the enactment of the Family Violence Protection Act in 2008, the Committee regrets that the law prohibits only physical violence and only within the family. The Committee is also concerned that corporal punishment in penal institutions, although unlawful as a disciplinary measure under the Constitution and Criminal Code, is not explicitly prohibited. Similarly, the Committee notes with concern that, although corporal punishment is unlawful in educational day-care centres and residential school institutions, it is not explicitly prohibited in other forms of alternative care.

"The Committee recommends that the State party explicitly prohibit in its national legislation corporal punishment in all settings including at home and amend the Criminal Code as well as the Foster Care Act. This should be undertaken with the objective of prohibiting corporal punishment in penal institutions as well as in all forms of alternative care. It is recommended that the State party strengthen its efforts to address corporal punishment, in particular within the family, by launching awareness-raising programmes, including campaigns on positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing, and promote alternative non-violent forms of discipline to corporal punishment."

Uzbekistan

(10 July 2013, CRC/C/UZB/CO/3-4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 38, 39, 40 and 41)

"While welcoming the implementation of a national programme of action for the application of the Convention against Torture, the Committee regrets that the definition of torture in Article 235 of the State party Penal Code does not fully comply with the definition stipulated in the Convention against Torture as stated by the Committee against Torture in its latest concluding observations on the State party (CAT/C/UZB/CO/3, para. 5,). Furthermore, the Committee remains gravely concerned about continued reports of torture and ill-treatment being routinely used in investigations, including of persons under the age of 18 years. The Committee is also deeply concerned about the use of solitary cells (“kartcers”) as punishment in juvenile prisons. Furthermore, the Committee is seriously concerned about the frequent use of forced labour as a form of punishment for children in government institutions such as schools and orphanages. 

"With reference 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 as well as general comment No. 13 (2011) on the right of the child to freedom from all forms of violence, the Committee urges the State party to:

a) further strengthen its measures to effectively investigate the allegations of torture and ill-treatment of persons under 18, and take all measures to bring the alleged perpetrators to justice with commensurate sanctions; 

b) ensure that the conditions and treatment of children in juvenile prisons are in full compliance with the Convention and the United Nations Rules on the Protection of Juveniles Deprived of their Liberty (A/RES/45/113), including by ceasing the use of solitary cells (“kartcers”); and, 

c) prohibit, by law, the use of forced labour as a form of punishment for children in government institutions such as schools and orphanages. 

"While noting the statement regarding the prohibition of corporal punishment in all settings made by the State party during the interactive dialogue with it, the Committee is concerned that, in practice, corporal punishment continues to occur frequently in the domestic context and in alternative care settings.

"With reference to the Committee’s general comment No. 8 (2006) on the right of the child to protection from corporal punishment, the Committee urges the State party to: 

a) ensure that its legislation explicitly prohibits corporal punishment in all settings, including in the home and alternative care, and establish monitoring and reporting mechanisms to enforce such a prohibition; 

b) undertake targeted awareness-raising, including campaigns, to promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline instead of corporal punishment; and, 

c) conduct research to learn about the public opinion and attitudes of professionals, parents and children on corporal punishment in order to better target awareness-raising and training programmes, and ensure that positive parenting and non-violent communication become well-known."

This is an automatic translation service. Extracts from laws, treaty body recommendations and Universal Periodic Review outcomes are unofficial translations.