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Mongolia: Legislation Prohibiting All Corporal Punishment

(May 4, 2016) The advocacy group Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children reported in March 2016 that Mongolia has passed two new laws that contain prohibitions against all corporal punishment of children. The Mongolian State Great Hural (parliament) passed the Law on Child Protection 2016 and the Law on the Rights of the Child 2016 in February 2016.  (Mongolia Becomes 49th State to Prohibit All Corporal Punishment, Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children (Mar. 2016); Mongolia Bans Physical and Humiliating Punishment of Children, Save the Children’s Resource Centre website (Mar. 18, 2016).)

The Law on Child Protection 2016 explicitly prohibits “all types physical and humiliating punishment against children by parents, guardians and third parties who are responsible for care, treatment, guidance and education of children and adolescents” in the course of raising children and disciplining bad behavior. (Mongolia Becomes 49th State to Prohibit All Corporal Punishment, citing art. 2(6) of the Law; Child Protection Law (Feb. 5, 2016), Mongolian Legal Information Integrated System website (in Mongolian).)  Moreover, in the education and upbringing of and caring for children, “parents, legal guardians, relatives, and teachers shall follow non-violent disciplinary methods.”  (Mongolia Becomes 49th State to Prohibit All Corporal Punishment, supra, citing art. 5(4) of the Law.)

According to article 7(1) of the Law on the Rights of the Child 2016, moreover, “[c]hildren have the right to be protected from crime, offences or any forms of violence, physical punishment, psychological abuse, neglect and exploitation in all social settings.” (Id.; Law on the Rights of the Child (Feb. 5, 2016), Mongolian Legal Information Integrated System website (in Mongolian).)

The new laws will come into force on September 1, 2016. As a result of the adoption of the new laws, “Mongolia becomes the 49th state to prohibit corporal punishment in all settings, including the home.  It is the first state in Eastern and South Eastern Asia to achieve this reform.” (Mongolia Becomes 49th State to Prohibit All Corporal Punishment, supra.)

According to statistics for the year 2013 compiled in the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) study, Hidden in Plain Sight, 46% of children (2 to 14 years of age) in Mongolia during the period 2005-2013 experienced some form of violent discipline at home, with 25% experiencing physical punishment and 38% psychological aggression.  (UNICEF, HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT: A STATISTICAL ANALYSIS OF VIOLENCE AGAINST CHILDREN 198, 200 (Sept. 2014).)