RESOLUTION HRC 222

FORUM: HUMAN RIGHTS COMMITTEE

QUESTION OF: Measures to Eradicate Domestic Violence (femicide)

SUBMITTED BY: Ecuador

CO-SUBMITTERS:Australia, Bolivia, Ethiopia, Haiti, Hungary, Malta, Norway, Paraguay, Somalia, United Arab Emirates.

STATUSPassed

Recalling previous international initiatives to solve the issue, such as but not limited to the United Nations (UN) Commission on the Status of Women established in 1946, the 1993 Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women, and the 2011 Council of Europe Convention or the Istanbul Convention, 

Reaffirming the 54 Articles addressing the rights of children, established by the 1989 UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), of which Article 27 states that children have the right to a safe home, 

Noting with appreciation the past policies implemented by world leaders that help address the problem and empower disadvantaged women and children,

Recognizing that gender-based violence can inflict severe physical and psychological harm on women and children that it has many negative social consequences,  

Fully aware that child harm and abuse can come in many forms ranging from physical violence to psychological aggression,

Fully conscious of the current lack of legislative frameworks, safehouses, or national guidelines, in some nations, which can efficiently protect the survivors of domestic violence from their perpetrators, 

Understanding that fostering and adoption agencies often struggle with child abuse within the assigned homes,

Confident that through cooperation with relevant international organizations, domestic violence against children can be relieved,  

  1. Urges all member states to work in conjunction with the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) in order to protect children from the threat of child abuse and the implications it can have on their well-being, education, health, and more, to establish guidelines for the maintenance of safety of children in their homes, through means such as but not limited to:
    1. vigilance in recognizing children suffering from domestic violence in order to address the issue, through means such as but not limited to, instructing and enlightening educators on indications and factors that can cause these situations to occur and how to approach this issue with the necessary bodies required, such as but not limited to, the child, their parents, and government organizations that handle the protection and safety of children,
    2. introduce a project similar to the Family Violence Appellate Project, to represent domestic violence survivors in appealing family law cases, to focus on the safety and wellbeing of the children through the use of restraining order appeals and custody disputes, where the child’s custody is granted to the inflictor of domestic violence in the home;
  2. Calls for the creation of an organization to support the mental health of children suffering or witnessing domestic violence, to be named Youth Domestic Violence Support Organization (YDVSO), or the reallocation of previously existing organizations under the supervision of the UN that will:
    1. bring together:
      1. victims of such issues
      2. psychologists, sociologists, and health experts,
    2. work towards increasing and contributing to the well-being of those affected by:
      1. organizing advisory missions with the aim of providing assistance to governments in the prevention of the issue
      2. providing a platform for discussion for victims and their guardians to be able to support one another,
    3. provide assistance and protection of the children who are facing violence in displacement camps or inside their residences;
    4. ensure that children taken away from violent households are assigned new guardians that can mentally and physically compensate for the abuse of the children in their custody by means such as, but not limited to:
      1. providing prospective guardians with a survey to collect data on their familial relations, history with adoption or foster care, and criminal background
      2. communicating with children of the prospective guardians regarding their approach to parenting
      3. giving children the opportunity to spend temporary time with their prospective guardians to ensure safety, security, and comfort in the new family environment
  3. Suggests the implementation of educational curricula in secondary schools for students and teachers concerning abuse management, entailing:
    1. monthly lessons on:
      1. signs of abuse within domestic settings
      2. risk factors that increase the likelihood of domestic violence against children
      3. the root causes of domestic violence against children, 
    2. free optional counseling with a licensed child therapist, preferably specializing in domestic violence,
    3. how to help an acquaintance struggling with abuse,
    4. the recognition, especially in the circumstances of lockdowns as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, of the signs of physical and emotional abuse that go unnoticed by members of the community outside the household such as teachers and coaches;
  4. Encourages all member states to help people better understand and accommodate for children experiencing domestic violence through ways such as but not limited to:
    1. responding appropriately to the needs of children experiencing domestic violence to ensure access to services by:
      1. instructing teachers and administrators in schools on how to recognize and approach these children
      2. designating specific counselors/professionals who will be responsible for the care of these children,
    2. offering professional guidance that:
      1. arranges for the child to be with a caring family
      2. ensures the child is receiving a proper quality education
      3. creates awareness for the importance of the education and well-being of children through multidimensional mass media campaigns,
    3. promoting extracurricular activities in order to:
      1. build a sense of community
      2. allow victims to explore their interests
      3. provide an extra outlet for enjoyment and fulfillment;
  5. Calls for member states to adopt legally binding frameworks and documents within their legislative system which include protective measures against child abuse and improve legal action in child abuse cases, in conjunction with the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs (UNOLA), such as: 
    1. outlining domestic violence against children as a legally-defined abuse in their criminal justice systems so that, 
      1. the police or prosecutors will have a legal responsibility to initiate action
      2. domestic violence is always dealt with as a felony, rather than categorized on the basis of the severity of the injuries 
      3. there will be consistent penalties imposed on the perpetrators, 
    2. providing medical personnel with adequate training that helps them to appropriately assist the victims
    3. circulating national guidelines for social workers on how to respond to cases of suspected domestic violence
    4. maintaining and evaluating the current number of shelters for child victims of domestic violence, in accordance with international standards;
  6. Encourages increasing government investment in child protection agencies to improve reactions to child abuse cases, and to work closely with court officials in an effort to: 
    1. effectively issue orders that will help to safely move the children from abusive households to safer locations,
    2. provide child victims of domestic violence with the possibility to continue studying in their current educational facilities, where: 
      1. they will be monitored by trusted guardians 
      2. they will receive counseling from psychiatrists should they exhibit symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder or other emotional disturbances,
    3. set up campaigns, with the help of UNICEF and other relevant organizations, with the objective of working with the general population to publicize the urgency of the issue.
  7. Encourages the creation of the project working in conjunction with UNICEF to create a safer environment for children who have experienced the psychological and physical traumas related to domestic violence, through means such as, but not limited to;
    1. care centers and safe houses for the protection and treatment of emotional distress, injuries after abuse to reduce the impact of the abuse imposed on the children and to promote a better and safer future
    2. the introduction of appropriate psychological care depending on the requirements and mental state of the child after undergoing the emotional abuse that can coincide with the issue of domestic violence
    3. hotlines for the protection of children to share their resources with law enforcement and increase efficiency in saving children from violent and abusive house-hold setting