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Print this pageGeneral Comment No. 10: Children's Rights in Juvenile Justice




UN OHCHR - Committee on the Rights of the Child

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UN report

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The Committee on the Rights of the Child has published its General Comment number 10 on "Children's Rights in Juvenile Justice." The Committee regularly adopts "general comments" based on specific articles, provisions and themes of the Convention on the Rights of the Child to assist the States parties in fulfilling their obligations under the Convention and to stimulate international organisations and specialised agencies in achieving the full realisation of the rights recognised in the Convention.

In the reports they submit to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, States Parties often pay quite detailed attention to the rights of children alleged as, accused of, or recognised as having infringed the penal law, also referred to as ‘children in conflict with the law’. In line with the Committee’s guidelines for periodic reporting, the implementation of articles 37 and 40 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) is the main focus of the information provided by the States Parties. The Committee notes with appreciation the many efforts to establish an administration of juvenile justice in compliance with the CRC. However, it is also clear that many States Parties still have a long way to go in achieving full compliance with the CRC, e.g. in the areas of procedural rights, the development and implementation of measures for dealing with children in conflict with the law without resorting to judicial proceedings, and the use of deprivation of liberty only as a measure of last resort.

The Committee is equally concerned about the lack of information on the measures that States Parties have taken to prevent children from coming into conflict with the law. This may be the result of a lack of a comprehensive policy for the field of juvenile justice. This may also explain why many States Parties are providing only (very) limited statistical data on the treatment of children in conflict with the law.

The experiences in reviewing the States Parties’ performances in the field of juvenile justice are the reason for this General Comment, by which the Committee wants to provide the States Parties with more elaborated guidance and recommendations for their efforts to establish an administration of juvenile justice in compliance with the CRC. This juvenile justice, which should promote inter alia the use of alternative measures such as diversion and restorative justice, will provide States Parties with possibilities to respond to children in conflict with the law in an effective manner serving not only the best interests of these children but also the short and long term interest of the whole society.

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Last updated 05/02/2007 10:50:05

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