Committee on the Rights of the Child: Trinidad and Tobago

Session 041 (2006)

(17 March 2006, CRC/C/TTO/CO/2, Concluding observations on second report, paras 8, 9, 39, 40 and 47)

"The Committee regrets that some of the recommendations in its concluding observations (CRC/C/15/Add.82) adopted following consideration of the State party’s initial report (CRC/C/11/Add.10) have been given insufficient follow-up, particularly those relating to … abuse, ill-treatment and domestic violence; corporal punishment…. Those recommendations are reiterated in the present document.

"The Committee urges the State party to make every effort to address the recommendations contained in the concluding observations on the initial report that have not yet been implemented and to implement the concerns contained in the present concluding observations.

"While welcoming the amendment to the Children Act (No. 46:01) prohibiting the use of corporal punishment as a penal sanction for persons aged under 18, the Committee remains concerned that corporal punishment is lawful in the home and institutions, and is widely practised.

"The Committee recommends that the State party:

a) expressly prohibit by law corporal punishment in all settings and ensure the implementation of the law;

b) conduct awareness-raising campaigns to inform the public about the negative impact of corporal punishment on children and actively involve children and the media in the process; and

c) ensure that positive, participatory, non-violent forms of discipline are administered in a manner consistent with the child’s human dignity and in conformity with the Convention, especially article 28 (2) as an alternative to corporal punishment at all levels of society.

"The Committee recommends that the State party take the necessary measures to prevent child abuse and neglect, by, inter alia:

a) carrying out public education campaigns that raise awareness of consequences of ill-treatment of children, alternative measures of discipline for children and address sociocultural barriers that inhibit victims from seeking assistance…."

Read more from Session 041 (2006)

Session 016 (1997)

(10 October 1997, CRC/C/15/Add.82, Concluding observations on initial report, paras. 17, 23, 32 and 39)

"The Committee is deeply concerned by the use of corporal punishment within the family, at school and in care institutions, as well as at the absence of a law that clearly prohibits the use of both mental and physical torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment against children.

"The situation in relation to the administration of juvenile justice, in particular its compatibility with articles 37, 39 and 40 of the Convention as well as other relevant standards such as the Beijing Rules, the Riyadh Guidelines and the United Nations Rules for the Protection of Juveniles Deprived of Their Liberty, is a matter of concern to the Committee. In particular, the Committee is concerned … that flogging is allowed by the law as a means of punishment and corporal punishment is allowed as a means of discipline in detention centre….

"In light of articles 3, 19 and 28.2, the Committee strongly recommends that corporal punishment within the family, at school and in care institutions be prohibited by law. It further recommends that the authorities develop and implement appropriate creative and socio-educational measures of discipline which respect all the rights of the child, as well as establish sensitization programmes for parents.

"… The Committee also recommends that corporal punishment in detention as a means of discipline, and flogging as a means of punishment, be abolished in the legislation and in practice."

Read more from Session 016 (1997)
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