Committee on the Rights of the Child: Nauru

Session 073 (2016)

(28 October 2016, CRC/C/NRU/CO/1, Concluding observations on combined initial report, paras. 34 and 35)

“While the Committee notes as positive the provisions in the Education Act 2011 (art. 37) and the Correctional Service Act 2009 (art. 33) prohibiting corporal punishment in schools and penal institutions, it is concerned that:

(a) Despite recent law reforms, corporal punishment continues to be widely accepted in society as a means of disciplining children and is not fully prohibited in the home, in alternative care and day-care settings;

(b) In spite of its explicit prohibition in schools and penal institutions, reports that have emerged concerning children living in detention-like settings, including in the Regional Processing Centre, suggest that it continues to be practised;

(c) Certain legal provisions, in particular article 78 of the Crimes Act 2016 , may be construed as a justification for the use of corporal punishment in child-rearing.

“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) Explicitly prohibit in legislation corporal punishment in all settings;

(b) Repeal all legislative provisions, in particular article 78 of the Crimes Act 2016, which could be construed as a justification for the use of corporal punishment in child-rearing;

(c) Ensure that the prohibition of corporal punishment is adequately monitored and enforced;

(d) Promote positive, non-violent and participatory forms of child-rearing and discipline through awareness-raising campaigns;

(e) Ensure that offenders are brought before the competent administrative and judicial authorities.”

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