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Draft Code on the Rights of the Child presented to the public in Georgia

Thursday, February 14
The draft Code on the Rights of the Child is a special law which introduces legal grounds, safeguards and guarantees the realization of rights and freedoms for children. It will guide all state agencies, local governments, other administrative bodies, the Common Courts, public and private organizations and individuals when working with, and making decisions about children.

“The Child’s Code will ensure wellbeing and protection for children in Georgia. Through the Code, we strengthen families, but also consider State responsibilities to protect a child when their own family fails to provide adequate care. We are creating a system that supports children to be happy in all settings. We have been working on this reform for the last two years. The UNICEF Representative in Georgia, Mr. Ghassan Khalil, has made an important contribution to this process and I would like to thank him personally”, said the Chairperson of the Human Rights and Civil Integration Committee Ms. Sophie Kiladze.

“The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child encouraged Georgia to adopt a law on the rights of the child”, said Dr. Ghassan Khalil, UNICEF Representative in Georgia. “In 2017 UNICEF conducted a comprehensive analysis of the national legislation concerning children’s rights, which recommended the amendment of more than 30 laws and the development of a separate law on the rights of the child. We commend the efforts of the Human Rights and Civil Integration Committee and appreciate the leadership of its Chairperson, Ms. Sophie Kiladze, in this process. We continue to support the Parliament in finalizing and raising awareness of the draft Code with the ultimate goal of its adoption.” added the UNICEF Representative.

The draft Code on the Rights of the Child:

- Covers all rights and freedoms of the child and provides stronger mechanisms for their protection and realization. This includes a special focus on rights to family, protection from all forms of violence, access to inclusive education and healthcare, social protection, and access to justice.

- Addresses equity gaps in the realization of all rights and freedoms of the child through an enhanced system for child rights support and protection which considers the needs and individual circumstances of the child and their family.

- Introduces stronger mechanisms for state accountability for the realization of the rights and freedoms of the child by introducing a child rights impact assessment tool, interagency coordination, multidisciplinary cooperation, data collection and analysis for the development of evidence-based policy, and specialization of professionals working with and for children.

After obtaining feedback from government agencies and civil society organizations, the draft Code on the Rights of the Child will be finalized and introduced to the Parliament for further consideration and adoption. It is expected the Code will be adopted by the Georgian Parliament during spring 2019. Public presentations, discussions and consultations with civil society organizations and young people will be organized to raise awareness of the draft Code and to ensure their participation in the finalization process. (UNICEF Georgia)