Committee on the Rights of the Child, session 65 (2014)

Recommendations/observations on corporal punishment in the Committee on the Rights of the Child's concluding observations to states examined in the 65th session

Congo, Republic of

(31 January 2014, CRC/C/COG/CO/2-4 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on second to fourth state party report, paras. 40 and 41)

"While welcoming the prohibition of corporal punishment to discipline a child, as provided in Law 4-2010 on the protection of the child, the Committee remains concerned that children still suffer violent corporal punishment at home and at school. 

"The Committee reiterates its recommendation (CRC/C/COG/CO/1, para. 38) and calls on the State party to: 

a) ensure the full implementation of Law 4-2010 prohibiting corporal punishment and ensure that all cases of corporal punishment are effectively investigated and prosecuted; 

b) continue to raise awareness among the general public, including children, about the unlawfulness and the negative consequences of corporal punishment and other forms of violence on the development and well-being of the child; 

c) promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline as an alternative to corporal punishment; and 

d) provide children with child-sensitive mechanisms to lodge complaints in case they are victims of violence, including corporal punishment."

Germany

(31 January 2014, CRC/C/DEU/C0/3-4 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on third/fourth state party report, paras. 32 and 33)

"The Committee notes with appreciation that children have a statutory right to violence-free upbringing. Nevertheless, the Committee remains concerned that a significant number of children experience different forms of violence in their homes. 

"The Committee recommends that the State party take all necessary effort to ensure that the right to a violence-free upbringing be more effectively implemented. Furthermore, the Committee recommends that the State party develop and strengthen already existing awareness-raising programmes aimed at promoting positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline to replace corporal punishment."

Holy See

(31 January 2014, CRC/C/VAT/CO/2 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on second report, paras. 39 and 40)

"The Committee welcomes the statement during the interactive dialogue that the delegation of the Holy See will take the proposal of banning corporal punishment of children in all settings back for consideration. However, the Committee is concerned that while corporal punishment, including ritual beatings of children, has been and remains widespread in some Catholic institutions and reached endemic levels in certain countries, as revealed notably by the Ryan Commission in Ireland, the Holy See still does not consider corporal punishment as being prohibited by the Convention and has therefore not enacted guidelines and rules clearly banning corporal punishment of children in Catholic schools, in all Catholic institutions working with and for children, as well as in the home.

"The Committee reminds the Holy See that all forms of violence against children, however light, are unacceptable and that the Convention leaves no room for any level of violence against children. The Committee also reminds the Holy See of its obligation under article 19 of the Convention to take all appropriate measures to protect the child from all forms of physical or mental violence. The Committee urges the Holy See to:

a) explicitly oppose all corporal punishment in childrearing, in the same way it opposes torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment;

b) amend both Canon Law and Vatican City State laws to explicitly prohibit all corporal punishment of children, including within the family;

c) establish mechanisms to effectively enforce this ban in all Catholic schools and institutions working with and for children as well as on the territory of the Vatican City State and to ensure accountability for violence against children; and

d) make use of its authority to promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing, and ensure that an interpretation of Scripture as not condoning corporal punishment is reflected in Church teaching and other activities and incorporated into all theological education and training."

Portugal

(31 January 2014, CRC/C/PRT/CO/3-4 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on third/fourth state party report, paras. 3, 33 and 34)

"The Committee welcomes the adoption of numerous legislative measures, including: …

f) Decree Law 59/2007 amending the Penal Code criminalizing all forms of corporal punishment of children and making domestic violence an autonomous crime….

"While noting the revision of the Penal Code in 2007 to prohibit corporal punishment against children, including within the family, and other measures to combat this practice, such as the Raise Your Hand Against Smacking Campaign, the Committee is concerned that corporal punishment continues to be practiced within the family and is widely accepted in society. 

"In line with general comment No. 8 (2006) on the right of the child to protection from corporal punishment and other cruel and degrading forms of punishment, and general comment No. 13 (2011) on the right of the child to freedom from all forms of violence, the Committee recommends that the State party continue its efforts through awareness-raising campaigns and parenting education programmes to end the practice of corporal punishment in all settings, including in the home. The Committee also urges the State party to promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline as an alternative to corporal punishment."

Russian Federation

(31 January 2014, CRC/C/RUS/CO/4-5 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on fourth/fifth state party report, paras. 32 and 33)

"The Committee notes that corporal punishment is unlawful as a sentence for crime and is considered unlawful in schools and penal institutions, but regrets that it is not explicitly prohibited in those settings. The Committee is also concerned that corporal punishment remains lawful in the home and in alternative care settings. 

"The Committee draws the attention of the State party to its General Comment No 8 (2008) on the right of the child to protection from corporal punishment and other cruel or degrading forms of punishment and urges the State party to legally prohibit the use of all forms of corporal punishment in all settings, in particular in the home and alternative care institutions 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."

Yemen

(31 January 2014, CRC/C/YEM/CO/4 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on fourth state party report, paras. 7, 8, 43 and 44)

"The Committee, while welcoming the State party’s efforts to implement the Committee’s concluding observations of 2005 on the State party’s third periodic report (CRC/C/15/Add.267), notes with regret that some of the recommendations contained therein have not been fully addressed. 

"The Committee urges the State party to take all necessary measures to address those recommendations from the concluding observations of the third periodic report under the Convention that have not been implemented or sufficiently implemented, particularly those related to the definition of the child, corporal punishment, harmful practices, education and administration of juvenile justice. 

"The Committee notes that the Ministry of Education issued Decree No. 426 (2012) prohibiting corporal punishment in schools. However, it is concerned at the challenges to the effective implementation of this decree, such as the lack of adequate monitoring mechanisms, the teachers’ preconceptions regarding corporal punishment as a disciplinary measure and the lack of accountability mechanisms. It remains concerned that corporal punishment continues to be widely used within the family, in alternative care settings and as a sentence for a crime. 

"The Committee urges the State party to: 

a) explicitly prohibit in its legislation all forms of corporal punishment including by adopting the draft amendments package on the rights of the child; 

b) introduce sustained public education, awareness-raising and social mobilization programmes, involving children, families, communities, traditional 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; 

c) ensure that legal proceedings are systematically initiated against those responsible for ill-treating children; 

d) promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline; and 

e) establish a child-friendly complaints mechanism."

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