Article 19 - latest Issue
Volume 5, Issue 2, 2009
Source: Article 19 5, pp 1 –2 (2009)More Less
RAPCAN made a submission and argued that not only are children the secondary victims of domestic violence, as suggested by stakeholders in the gender sector, but they are in fact primary victims as well. This article argues that corporal punishment by parents is a clear form of domestic violence and that children are victimised in a range of ways in homes typified by domestic violence. It will examine the rights and legislative framework relating to domestic violence and child protection; set out findings from research relating to children's experiences and the impact of domestic violence on children; and discuss recommendations for strengthening child protection in the context of domestic violence.
Source: Article 19 5 (2009)More Less
Since the previous edition of Article 19 in July 2009, there have been significant developments and activities in relation to the abolition of corporal punishment. In the international context, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights recently released a thematic report on corporal punishment. This edition provides the key aspects of this report which calls for the prohibition of all forms of corporal punishment of children.
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights calls on States to prohibit corporal punishment : international developmentsAuthor Bianca RobertsonSource: Article 19 5, pp 4 –5 (2009)More Less
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter ''the Commission'') recently released a new thematic document, ''The Report on Corporal Punishment and Human Rights of Children and Adolescents''. In this report, the Commission calls on Member States of the Organisation of American States (''OAS'') to prohibit and eliminate all forms of corporal punishment of children. It recommends that specific actions be taken to ensure the progressive realisation and protection of children and adolescents' human rights.
Author Catherine FranksSource: Article 19 5, pp 8 –18 (2009)More Less
''There is no law against it!'' a parent could argue with regards to corporal punishment. Looking at the domestic law in South Africa, this would be true. Although corporal punishment has been prohibited in all schools, care institutions and the juvenile justice system, it still may be lawfully carried out within families. South Africa, like all other States on the continent, with the exception of Somalia, has ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). It has also ratified the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACRWC). These, along with other international human rights instruments, oblige State Parties to take the appropriate measures to protect children from corporal punishment.
Whilst a national law prohibiting corporal punishment would send parents a clear message that physically punishing their children is unacceptable, such punishment would need to become a less socially acceptable form of discipline for a legal ban to be more effective. There are various ways to move towards changing the general public's attitude with regards to corporal punishment. This would be a positive undertaking, even while parental corporal punishment is still lawful in a State, because it would serve to discourage adults from physically punishing their children.
Ensuring the protection of children from all forms of corporal punishment : save the children Sweden reassures its commitment : save the children SwedenAuthor Deidre KleynhansSource: Article 19 5 (2009)More Less
In 1979, the International Year of the Child, Sweden became the first country in the world to prohibit all forms of corporal punishment of children; and as of 1 July 2009 (thanks to legislation, publicity and awareness campaigns) Sweden will have had a ban on all forms of corporal punishment for 30 years. Many countries have since followed suit, and as of March 2009 a total of 24 nations have legislation banning all forms of corporal punishment. While many African countries have made strides to ban corporal punishment in schools and institutions, it remains legalised at home in almost all African countries. The home should be the place where children feel the safest, but often parents betray their sense of safety by abusing children in the name of discipline. In Zambia, for example, a 15 year old girl was severely beaten all over her legs after she slept over at a friend's house without informing her mother. As a result of the severe beating, both her legs had to be amputated, in an attempt to save her life. Tragically she still lost her life. A clear and urgent need thus exists to protect children from all forms of violence, including the most hidden and least acknowledged form of violence - corporal punishment.
Source: Article 19 5 (2009)More Less
The International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) will be hosting its 18th international congress from 26 to 29 September 2010, in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. The theme for this year's conference is: ''One world, one family, many cultures: strengthening children and families affected by personal, intra-familial and global conflict''.