OMCT’S juvenile justice recommendations on the UPR pre-session on Uruguay

Geneva, 27/11/13- Today OMCT and its national partner inUruguay IELSUR, with the support of the Committee on Rights of the Child inUruguay and Save the Children, have presented its recommendations in thepre-session meeting to the Universal Periodic Review of Uruguay. OMCT has highlighted the importance ofsubstantial legislative and policy changes concerning deprivation of liberty ofchildren in Uruguay, and the need to ensure accountability and non-repetitionof acts of torture, inhuman or degrading treatment against children.

The following are OMCT’srecommendations on Juvenile Justice:

  • Measures should be taken tosubstantially improve child protection standards in the current legislation andto eliminate legal initiatives that go against international standards, such asthe national referendum planned for 2014. Additionally the state of Uruguayshould derogate the laws approved between 2008 and 2013 that affect the rightsand safeguards of children, especially art.5 of the law n° 18.315[1],the law n° 18.777[2]and the law n° 19.055.[3]
  • The State of Uruguaymust guarantee that the juvenile justice system is in accordance withinternational standards, using deprivation of liberty only as a measure of lastresort, for the minimum necessary period, and alwaystaking into account the best interest of the child. Alternative measures todeprivation of liberty should be promoted aiming a full reintegration of thechild into society.
  • TheGovernment of Uruguay should put in place safeguards for the protection ofchildren deprived of their liberty and guarantees that all allegationsof torture are object of a meaningful, diligent, impartial and transparentinvestigation in order to ensure accountability and non-repetition.
  • We recommend that the National HumanRights Institution, which is the governmental body responsible for implementingthe National Preventive Mechanism against Torture, to create a working groupfor the protection of children against torture, inhuman or degrading treatment,with a special focus on children deprived of their liberty, including in itsactivities frequent monitoring visits to juvenile detention centres.

For more information and otherrecommendations, please see attachments.

[1] Law concerningthe application of police procedures to children.

[2] Law that increases preventive detention from60 to 90 days.

[3] Law that imposesa minimum period for deprivation of liberty of one year to certain types ofcrimes committed by children, going against the exceptional use of deprivationof liberty.

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