Committee on the Rights of the Child: Bhutan

Session 075 (2017)

(5 July 2017, CRC/C/BTN/CO/3-5, Concluding observations on third/fifth report, paras. 22, 38 and 39)

“In the 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:

(a) Review the Penal Code of 2004, in particular article 109, to prohibit fully the use of corporal punishment in all settings, including the home, alternative care, monasteries, day care and schools; the Child Care and Protection Act of 2011; the Child Adoption Act of 2012; and the Domestic Violence Prevention Act of 2013, to prohibit unequivocally corporal punishment of children;

(b) Finalize promptly the initiative of the Dratshang Lhentshog (Commission for Monastic Affairs) to provide for alternative forms of discipline and take all measures necessary to enforce it in practice;

(c) Ensure that investigations, administrative and legal proceedings are initiated promptly and systematically in relation to cases of corporal punishment of children.”

“The Committee welcomes the progress in reaching near universal primary education enrolment and the adoption of the strategic document entitled “Bhutan Education Blueprint 2014-2024”. The Committee is however concerned about:

(f)The lasting practice of corporal punishment in schools, notwithstanding the directive from the Ministry of Education banning it.

“The Committee recommends that the State party:

(f) Adopt national legislation to explicitly prohibit corporal punishment in all educational settings and develop public education and awareness-raising programmes, involving children, families, communities, teachers 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 to promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline;

(g) Develop and implement initiatives to combat violence, sexual harassment and bullying among children in schools, including towards lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and intersex children, and train teachers and students to resolve conflicts peacefully, to create an environment of tolerance and respect;

(h) Seek technical assistance from UNICEF in the implementation of these recommendations.”

Read more from Session 075 (2017)

Session 049 (2008)

(8 October 2008, CRC/C/BTN/CO/2, Concluding observations on second report, paras. 37 and 38)

"The Committee, while noting that the State party is undertaking measures to promote alternative forms of disciplining, is concerned that corporal punishment has yet to be prohibited at home, in schools and in alternative care settings, including monasteries. The Committee is concerned that corporal punishment is still practiced.

"The Committee recommends that the State party:

a) adopt legislation as soon as possible, explicitly prohibiting all forms of corporal punishment of children in all settings, including the home;

b) take all measures to ensure the enforcement of the law, conduct capacity building of professionals working with children, carry out awareness raising and public education campaigns against corporal punishment and promote non-violent, participatory methods of childrearing and education, while 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."

Read more from Session 049 (2008)

Session 027 (2001)

(9 July 2001, CRC/C/15/Add.157, Concluding observations on initial report, paras. 40 and 41)

"Noting the respect for children in Bhutan, the Committee is concerned that there is insufficient information and awareness of the ill-treatment of children in schools and within the family.

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

b) take legislative measures to prohibit all forms of physical and mental violence, including corporal punishment and sexual abuse of children in the family, schools, and in institutions;

c) carry out public education campaigns about the negative consequences of ill-treatment of children, and promote positive, non-violent forms of discipline as an alternative to corporal punishment...."

Read more from Session 027 (2001)
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