A COMPARATIVE STUDY ON THE RIGHT OF CHILDREN TO BE FREE FROM CORPORAL PUNISHMENT: THE LAW AND PRACTISE

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A COMPARATIVE STUDY ON THE RIGHT OF CHILDREN TO BE FREE FROM CORPORAL PUNISHMENT: THE LAW AND PRACTISE  (CLICK HERE PAY WITH CARD  (ATM) AND DOWNLOAD THE FULL MATERIAL

 

CHAPTER ONE

  1. INTRODUCTION

 1.1   BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY 

 In most parts of the world, corporal punishment has been practiced as a means of disciplinary measure of children. Children’s welfare, their enjoyment of rights or otherwise are built around the family, and in schools where they interact with others. To create a better development of children and their human rights, it is imperative to embark up on the attitude that are used to justify the traditional use of punishment as a measure of enforcing discipline.

A number of successful movements have been made to ban corporal punishment in many countries Such as Sweden; in 1979, being the first country to forbid corporal punishment by law the second country which banned Corporal punishment is Finland in Article 1.3 of the child custody and rights of access act (1983, effective 1984).  In Corporal Punishment was seen as degrading the human dignity and in compatible with the modern penal methods of punishment. In the 1979 Children Convention, one of the very fundamental rights of children is the right to personal integrity and the right to be free from physical violence as any human being.

Corporal punishment, that seems to over shadow its terrible effect in a safe and convincing term, ‘discipline’, can be  exercised by parents, teachers and caregivers as part of their education and upbringing.

Nevertheless, the writer of this paper believes that corporal punishment has not brought long-term remedies except causing problems to the children. In writing this paper, I am not trying to undermine the value of discipline.

At present, different law reforms have been made and other measures are being taken to eliminate corporal punishment from the world. A number of countries have prohibited all forms of corporal punishments in their laws and many others have started to ban the practice of corporal punishment in their country laws. Different reforms have also been made to end corporal punishment in our country. However, there are gaps in national laws, policies and the convention in evading the use of corporal punishment in the country.

The objective of this study is to define the right of children to be free from corporal punishment and to analyze the laws and practice of selected countries. By focusing on a particular aspect of children’s rights, whether at home or at school or other institutions, each chapter tries to clarify the problem of children, difficulties they face and the ways international and national procedures serve to defend them from corporal punishment and the alternative measures that serve to abolish corporal punishment as to disciplining children.  It looks that there is a need to reform laws and beliefs towards the practice of corporal punishment.

The writer’s exhaustive emphasis is on child’s right to be free from corporal punishment by recognizing the significance of laws to safeguard each child’s rights. To that end, I will try to show different theories and experiences of other countries in my paper to develop generally applicable guidelines that would protect children from corporal punishment. These guidelines will also be used to critically evaluate and provide a basis for revising the procedural and substantive laws as well as statutes. For the purpose of comparison, I chose two countries, one from developing country where children face similar problem like Ethiopia to see the methods used to free children from corporal punishment, and the other from developed ones that would be exemplary for those moving to abolish all forms of corporal punishment even in a family level.

1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

Now a day, the world is moving towards accepting children’s equal rights, the respect for their human dignity and equal protection under the law. Various international instruments like the convention on the right of children and the African charter on the rights and welfare of children recognize the right of children to be protected from all forms of violence including corporal punishment. Different researchers on children at the globe and in Ethiopia revealed that children are physically punished at home, in schools, other institutions and in the society at large. When we look at the experiences of other countries, even in those countries, which banned all forms of corporal punishment against children, show that the legal prohibition by it self is not enough to end the practice of corporal punishment.

Ethiopia has ratified the CRC in 1992 and as per 19(1), 13(2) the laws regarding children are to be interpreted in light of the constitution. “Furthermore,” Art 36(1) e of FDRE bans corporal punishment. Though there are laws protecting children from corporal punishment, there are also laws that contradict with the convention and Art 36(3) of the constitution.

Despite the existence of the legal prohibitions, studies from the UN and other NGO’s conducted in Ethiopia showed that children are physically punished in schools, at home and other institutions in most parts of the country including Addis Ababa. Hence, exploring the effects of corporal punishment on children and the gaps in the laws and practices as in different studies and experiences of other countries sounds to be essential.

 

1.3   RESEARCH QUESTIONS

Based on the above background and statement of the problem, the following research questions will be raised in the paper:

 

1.3.1     What are the effects of the use of corporal punishment on                       children and is corporal punishment an effective means of                        discipline? Is there any other positive way to discipline                        children?

 

1.3.2     What is the status of the right of children to be free from                      corporal Punishment in light of the international                       instruments and  selected  National laws?

 

1.3.3    Are there gaps in Ethiopia’s laws as compared to                     international  obligation of the state?

 

1.3.4     Is it possible to fill the gaps of the law? How?

 

1.4 HYPOTHESIS 

With regard to Article (1) of the CRC a child means every human being below the age of 18 years unless, under the law applicable to the child, majority is attained earlier. Hence, due to her/his age vulnerability, the child needs special protection and care. According Article 19(1) of the convention, the child has the right to be free from any form of physical abuse including corporal punishment. However, this law is not practiced in our country. In different national laws, there are disparities in the use of corporal punishment on children. The issue of corporal punishment against children is an issue of one of the fundamental laws.

 

In our country, the FDRE constitution prohibits any use of violence against children, but there exist other Federal laws that justify the use of corporal punishment against children as a means of disciplining which contradict to the supreme law of the land. Ethiopia ratified the United Nations convention on the rights of the child and Article 19(1) of the convention specifies that state parties (i.e. governments that ratify the convention) must take appropriate measures to protect children from “all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation.” In order to fill this gap and to abolish the legalized form of violence against children, laws that ban the use of all forms of corporal punishment including in homes, and at schools have to be passed and utilized. It should be so in order to create awareness on the adverse effects of corporal punishment on children and apply other positive alternative ways for disciplinary measures.

 

1.5 THE OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY 

1.5.1 General Objectives

The main objective of this research paper is to show the problem of using corporal punishment and to fill the gaps in protecting children from corporal punishment. The researcher will also examine and demonstrate the problems and the gaps that are related to corporal punishment.

1.5.2 Specific Objectives

This paper has following five specific objectives; namely,

1.5.2.1 To raise some critical issues in relation to child  maltreatment.

1.5.2.2 To analyze the effects of using corporal punishment against  children as a discipline measure.

1.5.2.3 To give recommendations based on the gaps among  Ethiopian laws that legalized the use of corporal punishment against children by taking the experiences of model countries in abolishing all forms of child corporal punishment.

1.5.2.4 To further stimulate studies in the area of corporal  Punishment of children.

 

1.6 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY 

The method and type of this research is a descriptive survey of literature and analysis of cases in light of international and national laws in relation to corporal punishment against children.

 

The major source of data for this study is qualitative and secondary source, by which literatures and research reviews will be made to understand the nature, effects and practice of corporal punishment against children in Ethiopia. The practice of Kenya and Finland in this research area will also be raised. Moreover, a primary source of data will be gathered through semi- structured interviews for NGO’s and other responsible organs of the government. This will make the identification some of the problems in the practical implementation of child rights from corporal punishment easier.

1.7 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY

The study will only thoroughly investigate the effects of corporal punishment on children and the law and practice of corporal punishment in the Ethiopia. This will be so due to factors such as: time, finance, adequacy and accessibility of data.

1.8 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY 

It is the researcher’s belief that the output of the research will serve as an input for other researchers, NGO’s and other legal professionals. It can also make the concerned government organs give emphasis to the issue of corporal punishment and review the existing laws and policies so as to come up with sufficient provisions and policy terms that would govern corporal punishment.

It is also hoped that this research paper will create a better awareness of the consequences of the use of corporal punishment on children on the part of the parties involved in the practice.  

A COMPARATIVE STUDY ON THE RIGHT OF CHILDREN TO BE FREE FROM CORPORAL PUNISHMENT: THE LAW AND PRACTISE (CLICK HERE PAY WITH CARD  (ATM) AND DOWNLOAD THE FULL MATERIAL

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