Countdown to universal prohibition

Click for the full screen interactive map.
Prohibited in all settings Prohibited in all settings.
Government committed to full prohibition Government committed to full prohibition.
Prohibited in some settings Prohibited in some settings.
Not fully prohibited in any setting Not fully prohibited in any setting.

Good news ...

Global progress towards achieving prohibition of all corporal punishment of children in all settings is accelerating worldwide, particularly in the context of follow up to the UN Study on Violence Against Children. As at April 2016, 49 states have achieved prohibition of corporal punishment in all settings, including the home; a further 54 states are committed to achieving a complete legal ban.

Accelerating progress chart

States prohibiting all corporal punishment of children, including in the home

2016 - Mongolia

2015 - Benin, Ireland, Peru

2014 - AndorraArgentinaBoliviaBrazilEstoniaMaltaNicaraguaSan Marino

2013 - Cabo VerdeHondurasTFYR Macedonia

2011 - South Sudan

2010 - AlbaniaCongo (Republic of)KenyaPolandTunisia

2008 - Costa RicaLiechtensteinLuxembourgRepublic of Moldova

2007 - NetherlandsNew ZealandPortugalSpainTogoUruguayVenezuela

2006 - Greece

pre-2006 - Austria (1989), Bulgaria (2000), Croatia (1999), Cyprus (1994)Denmark (1997)Finland (1983)Germany (2000)Hungary (2005)Iceland (2003)Israel (2000)Latvia (1998)Norway (1987)Romania (2004)Sweden (1979)Turkmenistan (2002)Ukraine (2004)


Territories prohibiting all corporal punishment of children, including in the home

Curaçao (Netherlands)Faroe Islands (Denmark), Greenland (Denmark)Pitcairn Islands (UK)St Maarten (Netherlands)Svalbard and Jan Mayen Islands (Norway) 


Progress is also being made in prohibiting corporal punishment outside the home. To date, corporal punishment is fully prohibited in schools in 128 states, in penal institutions in 138 states and as a sentence for crime in 163 states. In alternative care settings and day care, corporal punishment is fully prohibited in 56 states.

But still there is a long way to go. Still, only 10% of the world's children are fully protected in law from all corporal punishment. And still, so long since the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the statute books in far too many countries at best fail to prohibit corporal punishment of children, at worst specifically authorise corporal punishment of children and set out the details of how it should be inflicted.

Global bar chart      global pie chart


Bad news ...

Prohibiting all corporal punishment of children in the home and all other settings is a well established obligation under international human rights law, but incredibly there are still 95 states where governments have not yet made a public commitment to law reform, and in 70 states, corporal punishment has not been fully prohibited in schools.

In the following 35 states, corporal punishment - whipping, flogging, caning - is still lawful under state, traditional and/or religious law as a sentence for crimes committed by juveniles:

Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Colombia, Dominica, Ecuador, Grenada, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kiribati, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritania, Nigeria, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Somalia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, State of Palestine, TongaTuvalu, United Arab Emirates, UR Tanzania, Vanuatu, Yemen, Zimbabwe


This is an automatic translation service. Extracts from laws, treaty body recommendations and Universal Periodic Review outcomes are unofficial translations.