Issue Papers on Children's Rights

Issue Papers are commissioned and published by the Commissioner for Human Rights for the purpose of contributing to debate or further reflection on a current and important human rights matter. All opinions in these expert papers do not necessarily reflect the position of the Commissioner.

Adoption and children: a human rights perspective (2011)

The Issue Paper addresses a number of issues including the need for procedural safeguards to ensure that all actors involved in the process of adoption fully respect children’s rights.


Children and juvenile justice: proposals for improvements (2009)

This Issue Paper identifies the relevant international and European standards on juvenile justice and outlines examples of how these standards are being implemented. The Commissioner for Human Rights reminds that any measure to tackle juvenile offences should always focus on children's needs and interests, not on repression.

Too many juvenile offenders continue to be detained while this measure is inappropriate for them as well as for society. Non-custodial measures exist and they are often more effective than detention. The focus should be therefore put on ensuring child rehabilitation as well as prevention of reoffending.

Children and corporal punishment: “The right not to be hit, also a children’s right” (2008)

A Europe without corporal punishment requires a combination of short-term measures including legal reform to prohibit clearly all forms of corporal punishment and long-term measures to influence social attitudes and promote positive alternative methods of relating and communicating.

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