Does the national legislation of Suriname protect children from violence in their home and at school?
Keywords:child rights, violence, best interest of the child, international obligations, national legislation
Background: Article 19 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) contains the obligation for the State to protect children from every form of violence.
Aim:To evaluate whether and how Surinamese legislation on violence against children at home and in school meets international regulations and obligations, particularly with regards to Article 3 (1) and 19 of the CRC.
Method: Firstly, an overview is presented of the international rules and standards relevant to the protection of the child from all forms of violence with a focus on Article 19 and 3 (1) CRC and the related General Comments of the CRC Committee. Secondly, a comparison was made between the obligations enshrined in Articles 3 (1) and 19 of the CRC and the Surinamese provisions in the national legislation; in that regard a distinction is made between provisions in the Penal Code and the Civil Code. Identified differences in the Surinamese law will be presented and recommendations are made for further legislative measures.
Results:This study of the implementation of Articles 3(1) and 19 of the CRC, shows concordances and discordances between national legislations and international obligations.
Conclusion: Legislation has been adopted to protect children from violence in Suriname, but the development of legislation itself is not sufficient to stop violence against children. Law enforcement and the implementation of an integral policy on this matter are recommended.