Regional Consultation for the UN Study on Violence Against Children
. 5 - 7 July 2005 Ljubljana, Slovenia  
Europe and Central Asia






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Communication kit

A Communication Kit has been designed by UNICEF and the Council of Europe for the Regional Consultation on Violence Against Children in Europe and Central Asia, 5-7 July, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Violence in Residential Facilities
Violence in the Community
Violence in Schools
Violence in the Home and Family

Who we are
Changing attitudes
About the UN Study
What you can do


Child's drawing, UNICEF Moldova
Ion Sestacovschi, 9 years old

About the UN study, Q & A

1) What is the UN Study on Violence Against Children?

The study is a landmark effort to provide a detailed global picture of the nature, extent and causes of violence against children, and propose clear recommendations for action to prevent and reduce such violence.

As the first report of its kind on this subject, the study is a critical tool to draw much-needed attention to a global problem. Ultimately the purpose of the study is to urge governments to fulfil their obligation to prevent and eliminate violence against children.

The study was mandated by the General Assembly and the Secretary-General appointed Independent Expert Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro to lead the study. Mr. Pinheiro is a former Secretary of State for Human Rights of Brazil and has directed the country's Centre for the Study of Violence since 1990.

2) How does the Study define “violence”?

The study defines violence as the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, which results or is likely to result in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment or deprivation. The study also bases its understanding of violence on the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

3) What prompted the Study?

The issue of violence has come up in a number of country reports submitted to the Committee on the Rights of the Child. It became apparent that there was a need for a better understanding of the global scope of the problem and mechanisms to measure and address it.

Following two days of discussion on violence against children in 2000 and 2001, the Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that the Secretary-General be requested, through the General Assembly, to conduct an in-depth international study on violence against children. The Commission on Human Rights passed a resolution supporting this recommendation, and requested the appointment of an Independent Expert.

4) What is the focus of the Study?

The study will focus on the nature and extent of violence against children in five settings:

- the home and family
- schools and educational settings
- other institutional settings (orphanages, children in conflict with the law)
- the community and on the streets
- work situations

For each type of violence, the Study will review what is known about the causes and associated risk and protective factors. Its focus will be on prevention strategies, in particular through the identification of best practices in prevention, including those designed by children.

Several cross-cutting issues that increase a child’s vulnerability to violence will also be considered in the report, including:

- violence in the media and other virtual settings, including child pornography
- traditional harmful practices, including female genital mutilation and early/forced marriage
- violence against children from ethnic minorities, immigrant or migrant communities
- violence against children infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS
- children as perpetrators of violence, including bullying.

5) Why is violence against children during armed conflict not included in the Study?

The impact of armed conflict on children was fully addressed by Graça Machel’s 1996 landmark study. The Study will, however, address some aspects of violence that children experience due to the instability caused by armed conflict, such as domestic violence.

6) Which UN agencies are involved in the Study?

UNICEF, WHO and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights will collaborate closely to support the work of the Independent Expert. A number of other UN agencies like ILO are also actively involved with the Study.

7) When will the Study be finalized?

The study is being produced over two years. The final report will be submitted by the Independent Expert to the Secretary-General, who is expected to present the recommendations of the report to the General Assembly in October 2006. The document will be a brief and policy-oriented presentation of the relevant findings and clear recommendations, designed for the primary audience of States/Governments.

Two separate reports are also planned:

- A more elaborate publication that will echo the key recommendations of the General Assembly Study Report and provide more in-depth information about the situation of children, best practices and implementation.
- A child-friendly version of the Study Report, designed specifically for children and young people.

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