Committee on the Rights of the Child, session 67 (2014)

Recommendations/observations on corporal punishment in the Committee on the Rights of the Child's concluding observations to states examined i the 67th session

Croatia

(19 September 2014, CRC/C/HRV/CO/3-4 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 32 and 33)

"While noting that corporal punishment of children is prohibited in the State party and other measures have been taken to combat this practice, such as the Council of Europe campaign against corporal punishment of children, the Committee is concerned that corporal punishment is still used as a disciplinary method in the family and is widely accepted in society.

"In line with 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 strengthen its efforts, including through awareness-raising and parenting education programmes, to end the practice of corporal punishment in all settings, in particular in the family, and promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline as an alternative."

Fiji

(19 September 2014, CRC/C/FJI/CO/2-4 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on second-fourth report, paras. 6, 7, 30 and 31)

"While welcoming the State party’s efforts to implement the Committee’s concluding observations of 1998 on the State party’s initial report (CRC/C/28/Add.7), the Committee 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 initial report under the Convention that have not been sufficiently implemented, particularly those related to allocation of resources, data collection, birth registration, corporal punishment, sexual abuse and children with disabilities.

"The Committee welcomes the constitutional protection from corporal punishment and notes that the Juveniles Act, article 57 of which provides legal justification for the use of corporal punishment under the right of teachers “to administer reasonable punishment” is currently under review. Furthermore, the Committee notes with serious concern that corporal punishment is not explicitly prohibited in the home, alternative care settings and day care.

"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 urges the State party to promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline as an alternative to corporal punishment, and furthermore reiterates its previous recommendations (CRC/C/15/Add.89, para. 36) to comprehensively prohibit corporal punishment by law and that measures be taken to raise awareness on the negative effects of corporal punishment and to ensure that discipline in schools, families and institutional care is administrated in a manner consistent with the child’s dignity. The State party shall furthermore establish regular compulsory training on child rights for every educator and teacher."

Hungary

(19 September 2014, CRC/C/HUN/CO/3-5 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on third-fifth report, paras. 33 and 34)

"The Committee notes that the State party’s legislation prohibits the use of corporal punishment against children in all settings. However, it regrets that the prohibition is not implemented in the family and schools for lack of awareness and training on alternative forms of discipline, non-reporting and lack of penal response against perpetrators. The Committee is also concerned about the recent establishment of the institution of school guards who are responsible for maintaining discipline in schools and who are authorized to use physical force against children in some instances.  

"In the light of 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, the Committee urges the State party to implement the prohibition on the use of all forms of corporal punishment in all settings, in particular in the home, schools and public care institutions, and provide for enforcement mechanisms under its legislation, including appropriate sanctions in cases of violation. It also 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. Furthermore, the Committee recommends that the State party ensure that school guards are prohibited from using physical force against children under any circumstance."

Morocco

(14 October 2014, CRC/C/MAR/CO/3-4, Concluding observations on third/fourth report, paras. 36 and 37)

"The Committee is concerned that in spite of the commitment made during the 2012 universal periodic review (A/HRC/21/3, para. 129.65), the State party has still not prohibited corporal punishment in the home, alternative care settings, day care and schools. The Committee is particularly concerned that corporal punishment still constitutes a widespread phenomenon, the vast majority of children having been subjected to violent forms of discipline including, in many instances, severe forms of punishment. The Committee is further concerned that in children’s homes and other governmental child-care institutions, violence is the disciplinary measure used most often. 

"In the light 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 urges the State party to: 

a) unequivocally prohibit corporal punishment in all settings; 

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

c) introduce sustained public education, awareness-raising and social mobilization programmes, involving children, families, communities and religious leaders, on both the physical and psychological harmful effects 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; and 

d) ensure the involvement and participation of the whole society, including children, in the design and implementation of preventive strategies against corporal punishment of children. "

Singapore

(19 September 2014, CRC/C/OPAC/SGP/CO/1 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on initial report (OPAC), paras. 21 and 22)

"The Committee regrets the imposition of caning on members of the armed forces, including underage volunteers, for various offences under the Singapore Armed Forces Act.

"With reference to the Committee’s concluding observations under the Convention (CRC/C/SGP/CO/2-3, para. 40), and in view 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 urges the State party to take prompt measures to amend legislation in order to unequivocally prohibit by law all forms of corporal punishment, including caning, in all settings."

Venezuela

(19 September 2014, CRC/C/VEN/CO/3-5 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on third-fifth report, paras. 44 and 45)

"The Committee welcomes the various initiatives undertaken by the State party to prevent violence against children, and in particular the “social inclusion initiative” that produced positive results as stated by the State party during the dialogue. However, the Committee is deeply concerned about the still existing high incidence of violence against children in all settings, including schools, home, public spaces and the Internet. The Committee regrets the absence of disaggregated data as to the extent of the problem and of a comprehensive strategy to combat all forms of violence against children.

"Recalling the recommendations of the United Nations study on violence against children of 2006 (A/61/299), the Committee recommends that the State party prioritize the elimination of all forms of violence against children. The Committee further recommends that the State party take into account general comment No. 13 (2011) on the right of the child to freedom from all forms of violence, and in particular: ...

c) ensure the full implementation of the legal prohibition of corporal punishment in all settings and promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline...."

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