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Optional protocolon the involvement of children in armed conflict, on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography, on a Communication Procedure
Corporal punishmentCorporal Punishment is prohibited.
Overview of the child rights situation

The Tunisian report shows that a great deal has already happened in recent years and that the situation regarding children's rights has improved significantly. The ban on corporal punishment is just one of the positive examples. Nevertheless, there are still regional disparities, especially in access to health care and services, and Tunisia still has room for improvement in the area of anti-discrimination.

Situation of intersexual and transsexual childrenThe Committee is deeply concerned about the persistent stigmatization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex children and urges Tunisia to conduct awareness-raising activities aimed at ending the stigmatization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex children. Also, the Committee urges the State party to ensure that intersex children are not subjected to unnecessary medical or surgical treatment, in line with the rights of the child to bodily integrity, autonomy and self-determination.
Female genital mutilation and reproductive rights

The Committee welcomes the legislative measures to prohibit violence against children, repeal the exemption from prosecution of perpetrators of sexual abuse who marry their victims and ensure legal protection for children who are victims of sexual abuse, and the capacity-building activities for police officers and national guard members on addressing cases of violence against children. However, the Committee remains seriously concerned about the high levels of violence against children, including domestic violence and sexual abuse, and the significant underreporting of such cases, owing to stigma based on deeply rooted societal norms.

To improve the situation concerning reproductive health, the Committee recommends to adopt a comprehensive sexual and reproductive health policy for adolescents aimed at ensuring that all girls and boys, including those who are out of school and those in rural areas, receive confidential and child-friendly sexual and reproductive health information and services, including access to contraceptives.

Racism, children belonging to a minority and indigenous childrenThe Committee notes with appreciation the legal prohibition of racial discrimination.
Situation of children with disabilities

The Committee notes the measures taken to improve access for children with disabilities to education. The Committee recommends that the State party organize the collection of data on children with disabilities and develop an efficient and harmonized system for disability assessment in order to facilitate access for children with all types of disabilities to accessible education and services, including health, social protection and support services. Tunisia should also adopt a national policy aimed at strengthening specialized and affordable health-care services for children with disabilities and expand social assistance schemes for parents and caregivers of children with disabilities.
In addition to that, the Committee recommends that the State party ensure that all children with disabilities have access to inclusive education in mainstream schools, ensuring that schools are equipped with trained teachers, accessible infrastructure and teaching materials adapted to the needs of children with disabilities

Situation of asylum-seeking, refugee and migrant childrenThe Committee is deeply concerned about reports of the forcible deportation of asylum-seeking and migrant children and of children living in immigration detention centres.To improve the situation, the Committee recommends that the State party develop a legislative framework on asylum-seeking and migrant children and establish status determination procedures to ensure the identification and protection of asylum-seeking, refugee and migrant children, including unaccompanied children and separated children. In addition to that, the State party should appoint a legal guardian and provide legal support for all unaccompanied children and ensure their access to remedies.
Free kindergartenYes
Free primary and secondary schoolYes
Digital possibilitiesThe Committee recommends to the State party to ensure that draft laws on access to information and the digital environment, including the bill on the electronic communications code, adequately protect children from harmful content and materials and online risks, and provide for mechanisms to prosecute violation.
physical health

The Committee recommends that the State party increase its allocation of resources for primary health care to make it both accessible and affordable, especially in rural areas. Furthermore, the Committee recommends that the State party identify and effectively address the causes of child malnutrition and obesity, including through public awareness-raising activities on nutritional issues and healthy eating habits, strategies that enable households living in poverty to acquire access to healthy food and regulation of the marketing of unhealthy foods to children in order to address child obesity.

Concerning adolescent health, the Committee recommends to assess the impact of efforts to address drug abuse and tobacco and alcohol consumption, with a view to strengthening such programmes, and develop accessible and child-friendly drug dependence treatment and harm-reduction services and life skills education on preventing substance abuse.

Relation to other countries
mental health

The Committee recommends to increase the availability and accessibility of mental health services and programmes for children, paying particular attention to those in rural areas and the impact of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

Impacts of climate change

The Committee recommends that Tunisia ensure that children’s needs and views are taken into account in developing policies and programmes to address climate change and disaster risk management. Tunisia should also strengthen efforts to increase awareness among children of climate change and other environmental issues by incorporating them into the school curriculum and teacher training programmes.

Business sector

The Committee welcomes the national action plan to combat child labour and the prohibition of employment of children in domestic work, but it is deeply concerned about the high number of children engaged in domestic work and hazardous work.
To improve the situation, the Committee recommends to establish clear regulations on working hours for children, and sanctions for those who violate them, and harmonize all legislation regarding child labour. Also, the Committee recommends that the State party explicitly prohibit the employment of children in harmful or hazardous work and develop a list of hazardous work prohibited for children.

Situation of juvenile justice

The Committee welcomes the measures taken to create a dedicated unit on child justice within the Ministry of Justice, to train professionals on non-judicial measures and to support civil society organizations working with children recognized as having infringed criminal law.
For further improvements, the Committee urges Tunisia to, inter alia, ensure the provision of effective legal representation, free of charge, for all children who are facing criminal charges at an early stage of the procedure and throughout the legal proceedings and ensure that detention conditions comply with international standards, including with regard to access to education and health services. The Committee furthermore urges Tunisia to strengthen the training of judges, as well as prosecutors, lawyers, police officers, child probation officers and all other professionals in the child justice system and ensure that it is continuous and covers all areas of the Convention.

Specific observations

The Committee recommends to ensure that children are heard and that their views are given due consideration in relevant administrative and judicial proceedings in respect of all rights covered by the Convention and in all decisions affecting them.

To improve the situation for Amazigh children, the Committee recommends to ensure the right of Amazigh children to intercultural and bilingual education that respects their culture and traditions, including by integrating Amazigh as a second language in schools.

Additional background

Concluding observations on the fourth to sixth periodic reports released on 2 September 2021. More information about education: Tunisia's Constitution of 2014

Last Updated (date)27th of February, 2022