Venezuela: Children's Rights References in the Universal Periodic Review

A compilation of extracts featuring child-rights issues from the reports submitted to the second Universal Periodic Review. There are extracts from the 'National Report', the 'Compilation of UN Information' and the 'Summary of Stakeholder's Information'. Also included is the final report and the list of accepted and rejected recommendations.

Venezuela - Twenty-sixth session - 2016

1 November 2016 - 09:00 - 12:30

National report

Compilation of UN Information

Summary of Stakeholders' Information

Accepted and Rejected Recommendations

National report

I. Methodology for the preparation of the report and consultation process

4. With regards to recommendation 94.34, in order to sensitize and train public officials working with human rights, a workshop entitled “Social investment and State investment in children and adolescents” was run, in accordance with the recommendations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child and with the cooperation of UNICEF; it was attended by 56 public officials.

II. Country context

14. In January 2014 extremist opposition groups again resorted to violence to overthrow President Maduro, resulting in 54 deaths and hundreds of injuries to children, young people, older people, officials of the Public Prosecution Service and police officers. They also attacked and destroyed schools, universities, health centres and public transport systems, among other things, causing more than $10 billion of damage.

III. Commitments

21. Thanks to great efforts by all State bodies, Venezuela is now up-to-date with the drafting and submission of periodic reports to the treaty bodies. In 2013 it submitted its combined nineteenth to twenty-first reports on the International Convention on the A/HRC/WG.6/26/VEN/1 6 GE.16-14525 Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. In 2014 it submitted its combined third to fifth reports on the Convention on the Rights of the Child; its combined seventh and eighth reports on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women; and its fourth report on the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

V. Institution-building

30. Venezuela now has a broad legal framework for the promotion and protection of human rights and has reinforced existing legislation with laws including: the Act on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Equal Treatment for Persons living with HIV/AIDS and their Families (2014), the Act amending the Child Protection Act (2014), the Act amending the Act on Women’s Right to a Life Free from Violence (2014), the Special Act to Prevent and Punish Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment (2013), the Culture Act (2013), the Act on Organized Crime and Financing of Terrorism (2012), the Act on Disarmament and Arms and Munitions Control (2013), the Racial Discrimination Act (2012), the Act on Special Communal Peace Courts (2012), the Act to Punish Politically Motivated Crimes, Disappearances, Torture and Other Human Rights Violations in the Period 1958-1998 (2011), the Act amending the Act on Donations and Transplants of Organs, Tissues and Cells in Human Beings (2011), the Act on Missions, Great Missions and Micro-missions (2014), the Act on the Pension and Retirement System for Employees of National, State and Municipal Administrations (2014), the Fair Prices Act (2015), the Act on the System for Review and Correction, Relaunch and Restructuring of the Police and Citizen’s Security Bodies (2014), the Labour and Workers Act (2012), the Act amending the Act on Food for Workers (2012), the Act on Security of Employment (2015), the Act on Socialist Cestaticket (2015), the Act on the National System of Food and Agriculture (2014), the Act on Comprehensive Regionalization for the Social and Productive Development of the Nation (2014), the Act on the Great Agricultural Mission for Venezuela (2014), the Identification Act (2014), the Police Service Act (2015), the Act on Community Management of Services and Other Activities (2014), Act on the Children of Venezuela Great Mission (2011), the Act on the Great Mission on Knowledge and Work (2012), the Act on the Benefits Scheme under the Housing and Habitat Regime (2012), and the Act on Fair Pricing for Houses and Apartments (2011).

32. The Plan takes up the recommendations accepted after the first universal periodic review. The validation process involved 258,096 people and 153 human rights organizations, including organizations representing groups requiring special protection, such as indigenous peoples, persons deprived of their liberty, women, children, persons with disabilities, persons of African descent, young people and the LGBTI population. The whole process was supported by the United Nations system

VII. Economic, social and cultural rights

Poverty reduction

Recommendations 94.1, 94.6, 94.4, 94.6, 94.7, 94.8, 94.9, 94.10, 94.15, 94.18, 94.26, 94.37, 94.39, 94.40, 94.41, 94.42, 94.44, 94.45, 94.75

39. The rolling review of programmes revealed the need to set up Socialist Mission Bases, which are logistics and operational centres built by the State in the heart of 1,500 communities identified as living in extreme poverty. In addition, in 2014 the Great Mission on Homes for the Nation was set up, bringing together the various programmes targeting the most disadvantaged sectors in order to protect Venezuelan families and provide comprehensive support to children at the earliest stages, and at the same time to support parents, siblings, grandparents and other members of the household; in this way poverty will be eradicated through the creation of optimal conditions for the full development of the population. By 2015 a total of 593,499 families had benefited; in addition, 75,000 Socialist Mission cards have been given to the most disadvantaged families, whereby monthly cash transfers are made, for use only in purchasing food and medicine

Right to health

Recommendations 93.20, 94.1, 94.6, 94.9, 94.11, 94.48, 94.49, 94.50, 94.51

50. Infant mortality has declined significantly as a result of improvements in the determinants of health, particularly as reflected in post-neonatal mortality figures; improving neonatal care is a challenge if progress is to be made in reducing neonatal mortality. The mortality rate for children aged under 1 has declined by 31.9 per cent. In 2015 the child mortality rate was 14.79 per cent.

51. As to unwanted teenage pregnancies, 2015 saw the launch of the 2015-2019 “Matea Bolívar” strategic intersectoral plan for wanted, safe and happy motherhood, with shared responsibility for motherhood and humanized childbirth. It also makes provision for indigenous peoples, ensuring prompt care, notably in obstetric emergencies.

52. As to vaccination, 142,616,362 doses were administered between 2007 and 2015 and, during Vaccination Week in the Americas in 2015, coverage was 96.83 per cent. As part of the “Ruta Materna” programme to prevent maternal and child mortality and promote humanized childbirth, 26,995 newborns and 52,500 pregnant women have been evaluated; among the latter, 27,426 were deemed to be at high obstetric risk and 14,223 were registered in the mother and child identification and follow-up system. Treatment has been provided to 62,225 HIV/AIDS patients and 155,000 patients with sexually transmitted infections, and 5,472,000 male condoms have been distributed across the country. In terms of mental health, 4,262,162 units of psychotropic medication were distributed to 120,907 individuals registered in the Comprehensive System of Access to Medicines.

Right to adequate food

Recommendations 94.1, 94.6, 94.9, 94.40, 94.41, 94.42, 94.45, 94.47

61. To counter the effects of economic warfare, the Great Mission on Food was stepped up in 2013 in order to facilitate access to basic commodities for the population as a whole and strengthen the public food distribution networks. In 2014 95.4 per cent of Venezuelans had three or more meals a day; more than 4 million children had two meals and a snack in Bolivarian schools.

62. In 2013 the rate of child malnutrition was 3.4 per cent In 2014 the rate of undernutrition was below 5 per cent. Venezuela has the world’s fourth lowest rate of child malnutrition. The height of the average child in Venezuela is now nearly 2 cm more than it was in the 1990s.9

Right to housing

Recommendations 94.1, 94.6, 94.52, 94.53, 94.54, 94.55, 94.56

67. Another major programme is the “Barrio Nuevo Barrio Tricolor” Great Mission, a housing renovation programme which rehabilitated 104,467 dwellings and 1,040 apartment blocks between 2013 and 2015, and constructed 175 children’s playgrounds, benefiting 2,876,447 families.

Right to education

Recommendations and voluntary commitments 94.1, 94.6, 94.9, 94.51, 94.46, 94.51, 94.57, 94.59, 94.60, 94.61, 94.62, 94.63, 94.64, 98 (g)

68. In Venezuela, 82 per cent of schools are public, free of charge and high-quality, and receive support from the central, state and municipal governments. In the 2014/15 school year, coverage across all levels and in all forms of education for ages 3 to 16 was 89.3 per cent; and in primary school it was 93 per cent; there are gender parity indexes at all levels of education.

69. Since 2013 more than 4 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) has been allocated to the Subsystem of Basic Education (2013: 4.14 per cent; 2014: 4.39 per cent; and 2015: 4.03 per cent). Adding this percentage to the amount allocated to university education yields a total that exceeds the 6 per cent of GDP recommended by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) for education.

70. As of 2015, 2,838,079 individuals, mostly women (58 per cent) and with an average age of 55, had learned to read and write under the Robinson I and II educational programmes, The Ribas Mission has trained 1,000,766 persons; 10 and 417,796 students have graduated from the Sucre Mission.

71. One hundred thousand textbooks have been provided free of charge to students in basic education.12 The textbooks are adapted to the language and culture of the indigenous A/HRC/WG.6/26/VEN/1 GE.16-14525 13 communities. As of the first quarter of 2016, more than 4.5 million “Canaimita” laptops had been distributed, representing an investment of around $1.5 million.

72. The narrowing of the digital divide has had a significant social impact. For computer repair and software upgrading, 2,704 Bolivarian computer and telecommunications centres have been set up, reaching the most disadvantaged parishes. By the end of 2014 technological training had been provided to more than 1.8 million people and 1,000 students with special educational needs had been guaranteed access to information and communication technologies. Free Wi-Fi connection is guaranteed in most central squares of the country.

73. During the 2014/15 school year, there was a total of 1,597,521 children in preschool, representing an enrolment rate of 79 per cent; in primary education, total enrolment was 3,449,592, an enrolment rate of 93 per cent; and in secondary education (general and technical), the net enrolment rate was 73 per cent, with 2,301,822 adolescents and young people in school.

74. Strategies have been deployed for introducing non-conventional education in early childhood (Simoncitos in the Community and Simoncitos in the Family) for 100,353 children aged 0 to 6 every school year, involving 23,224 “day mothers” who help with education but at the same time are in the labour market. In addition, support was provided to 7,947 family members in the form of training in sexual and reproductive health, family education and personal growth.

75. During this period, broad consultations were held on the quality of education, in which the population gave their opinion on the kind of education they would like. The exercise involved 7,233,489 people, or 27 per cent of the population aged over 6, which meant that 3 out of every 10 Venezuelans expressed an opinion.

76. With regard to university education, a new national university entrance system has been created, guaranteeing fair and equitable access, with 1 per cent of places set aside for persons with disabilities. Total enrolment in higher education in 2015 was 2,622,013, i.e., 83.25 per cent of 17- to 22-year-olds had access to university.

77. With regard to student benefits, as of 2014 a total of 252,178 scholarships had been awarded to undergraduate and graduate students to boost education in strategic areas of national development. Students also have free health care and student residences have been built and equipped.

Right to culture

Recommendations 94.1, 94.6, 94.46, 94.58

84. To ensure the democratization of access to culture for all sectors the Ministry of People’s Power for Culture was created, and its policies and programmes have made possible the spread of the Simón Bolívar Venezuelan Youth and Children’s Orchestra System; the creation of the Experimental University of the Arts; the Villa del Cine; the El Perro y la Rana publishing company, which publishes works by both established and upand-coming authors; the implementation of mass programmes to encourage the reading of national and international classics; the spread of craft fairs; and festivals to revive the country’s musical tradition.

Right to security of person

Recommendations and voluntary commitments 93.9, 94.1, 94.3, 94.6, 94.12, 94.13, 94.14, 94.28, 94.29, 94.30, 98 (e), 98 (i)

91. In the last four years 4,784 crime-prevention initiatives have been carried out in communities, reaching 680,816 people. Between 2014 and 2015 94,141 security force officials were trained. In schools, training was provided to an average of 128,000 children and adolescents. During the same period, to help prevent crimes against women and promote peaceful coexistence, various training strategies were implemented, reaching in 2014 an average of 133,000 members of organized communities.

92. Sports training is also used as a tool for crime prevention among young people; between 2014 and 2015 there were 11,980 sports meets, involving 710,674 people, mainly youngsters.

97. As for efforts to combat human trafficking, Venezuela has signed the major relevant international conventions and declarations and harmonized its domestic legislation. It has developed plans and projects to combat trafficking in persons from different perspectives: as well as broad-spectrum plans there are others focusing on women, children and adolescents. Since 2014 a workplan has been in operation with UNHCR, to analyse the trafficking situation at the country’s borders.

98. Action to prevent trafficking focused on skills development and training, promotion, dissemination and information sessions, and publicity campaigns, all of which has helped raise officials’ awareness and sensitivity to the most common forms and the different approaches to take, and improved the way agencies deal with the issue. Since 2014 the establishment of committees to combat crimes of trafficking in women, children and adolescents has been encouraged, as a means of coordinating agencies’ work in combating trafficking.

99. Support to trafficking victims takes the form of a package to meet their basic needs, psychological and medical treatment, occupational training, recreation and legal assistance. In the case of the foreign population, support takes the form of repatriation to their country of origin, the processing of passports, the obtaining of visas, the provision of shelter, or resettlement in a third country. There are also shelters for women, and when children or adolescents are involved, there are shelter programmes in care institutions. From 2012 to 2015, 151 victims were registered and protection measures were granted to 21 victims — 19 women, 1 adolescent boy and 1 girl.

Rights of persons deprived of liberty

Recommendations and voluntary commitments 93.5, 93.7, 93.10, 93.11, 93.12, 93.13, 93.14, 93.15, 94.1, 94.5, 94.6, 94.31, 94.32, 94.33, 94.35

101. The National Prison Buildings Fund was created as a means of eradicating overcrowding, and 26 projects benefiting some 37,286 adults and adolescents deprived of their liberty have started. There are now 39 men’s prisons, 18 women’s prisons and 32 institutions for adolescents.

102. As a result, detention conditions have improved and this has had a positive effect on life inside prisons. The new prison regime now covers 90 per cent of men’s prisons and 100 per cent of women’s and adolescents’ institutions, and the level of violence has dropped exponentially. To improve surveillance and control in prisons, high-tech mechanisms have been installed, representing an investment of $164 million.

Compilation of UN information

I. Background and framework

A. Scope of international obligations

5. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that the State ratify OPCRC-IC,16 the Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons and the Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness,  and consider ratifying the International Labour Organization (ILO) Domestic Workers Convention, 2011 (No. 189).

B. Constitutional and legislative framework

11. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged the State to finalize the National Plan of Action for Children and Adolescents (2015-2019) and develop a strategy that includes mechanisms for its implementation, monitoring and evaluation.

II. Cooperation with human rights mechanisms

C. Cooperation with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

18. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that the State cooperate with relevant international bodies, such as OHCHR, on the implementation of human rights instruments. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women recommended that the State avail itself of regional or international technical assistance in implementing CEDAW, including through OHCHR.

III. Implementation of international human rights obligations, taking into account applicable international humanitarian law

A. Equality and non-discrimination

20. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that the State prevent all forms of discrimination, including discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and disability, and ensure that such discrimination is prohibited.

B. Right to life, liberty and security of person

27. The Committee against Torture was dismayed by reports of a widespread pattern of extrajudicial killings committed by police or vigilante groups, noting that 667 killings had been committed by law enforcement officers in 2012 and 600 in 2013. It recommended that the State put an end to those crimes and ensure that extrajudicial killings are investigated promptly, thoroughly and impartially and that the alleged perpetrators are brought to justice.61 The Committee on the Rights of the Child reiterated its concern about the high number of extrajudicial killings of children and the low number of prosecutions undertaken.

36. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women was concerned that violence against women and girls was widespread and on the rise, and about the insufficient implementation of the Act on Women’s Right to a Life Free from Violence. It urged the State to accord priority to the Act’s full implementation.

37. The same Committee was also concerned at the prevalence of trafficking in women and girls, and recommended that the State investigate its extent and root causes and expeditiously adopt the draft bill on trafficking in persons.

38. The Committee on the Rights of the Child, expressing concern about the high incidence of violence against children, recommended that the State develop a comprehensive national strategy to prevent such violence and ensure the full implementation of the legal prohibition of corporal punishment in all settings.  The Committee was concerned about reports of child prostitution and urged the State to enforce legislation to protect children from all offences covered under OP-CRC-SC by, inter alia, prosecuting and sanctioning all offenders. It urged the State to take the necessary measures to prevent the recruitment of children and to protect them.

C. Administration of justice, including impunity, and the rule of law

44. The country team welcomed the increase in the age of criminal responsibility (from 12 to 14) for adolescents who commit offences, but considered that the broadening of the range of offences punishable by imprisonment and the lengthening of the period of deprivation of liberty were legislative changes that were contrary to international standards.

45. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged the State to: expedite the adoption of a law reform on juvenile justice, in accordance with international standards; ensure that detention conditions are compliant with international standards; and prohibit the use of military training as part of socio-educational programmes for juveniles in detention.

D. Right to marriage and family life

47. The country team indicated that 18 per cent of children are not registered in their first year of life and that indigenous populations and those in remote areas are the most disadvantaged. The country team drew attention to programmes such as “Misión Identidad” for the registration of children and recommended the evaluation of those programmes.

48. The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged the State to expedite measures to raise the minimum age of marriage for girls and boys to 18 years.

G. Right to social security and to an adequate standard of living

66. The Committee on the Rights of the Child noted the significant initiatives undertaken to reduce poverty and exclusion. The country team highlighted social programmes designed to meet the Millennium Development Goals. The team noted, however, that official figures show that extreme poverty increased between 2011 and 2013 (from 9 per cent to 13 per cent). The country team recommended ensuring the availability of recent statistics and disaggregated socioeconomic indicators showing the impact of policies.

72. The Committee on the Rights of the Child was concerned about reports that the drinking water was not of adequate quality in some areas, resulting in cases of infant deaths; it recommended ensuring the availability of good quality drinking water throughout the country.

H. Right to health

77. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended implementing the existing protocol on prenatal care and emergency obstetric care and providing adequate sexual and reproductive health services.The country team noted the challenge in medical care for pregnant women and newborns.

78. The Committee on the Rights of the Child welcomed measures to provide free universal access to antiretroviral treatment, and recommended that the State continue implementing measures to prevent HIV/AIDS transmission, and address the shortages of antiretroviral drugs.

I. Right to education

80. The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights took note with satisfaction of the measures adopted to increase investment in and improve access to education.

81. The country team noted that the sixth grade completion rate is not universal and that educational lag and problems of access and quality persist. The Committee on the Rights of the Child was deeply concerned about the persistent challenges for children from rural areas, indigenous and afro-descendant children, as well as refugee and asylum-seeking children in accessing quality education.

82. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women was concerned about the poor quality of education and the lack of qualified teachers.

83. The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights was concerned at reports of indoctrination and recommended that the State ensure that education promotes full respect for human rights and active participation in a free society.The Committee on the Rights of the Child urged the State to explicitly prohibit pre-military instruction in regular schools and vocational education.

84. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women was concerned about the dropout rate among adolescent mothers, and recommended promoting the retention of pregnant girls in school and their reintegration after childbirth. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that the State ensure school enrolment and prevent dropout of children in rural areas, indigenous and Afro-descendant children and children with disabilities; and facilitate the enrolment of refugee and asylum-seeking children.

85. UNESCO recommended that the State continue implementing policies to guarantee education for disadvantaged groups and increasing investment in education, and intensify efforts to eradicate discrimination against girls.

86. UNHCR recommended confirming the asylum-seeker certificate as a valid document for the registration in public schools.

J. Persons with disabilities

87. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that the State address the specific needs of children with disabilities in all areas, in particular in education, health, accessibility, recreation and access to culture, and employment.

88. The country team recommended advancing in the development of a concept of inclusive education in line with the CRPD.

K. Minorities and indigenous peoples

93. The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination was concerned about the presence of illegal miners in the Amazon region and their attacks on members of the Yanomami people; it urged the State to increase protection for indigenous peoples in the Amazon region and conduct a thorough investigation into the attacks.The Committee on the Rights of the Child was concerned about reports that indigenous children were involved in illegal gold mining, in slavery-like conditions, which could amount to sale of children. It strongly urged the State to investigate all cases involving children working in illegal gold mining and prosecute alleged perpetrators of crimes covered by OP-CRC-SC.

L. Migrants, refugees and asylum seekers

99. The Committee on the Rights of the Child recommended that the State ensure that all children and their families in need of international protection receive appropriate and fair treatment at all stages. It also recommended that the State provide assistance to children who have been involved in armed conflicts abroad.

Summary of Stakeholders' Information

I. Information provided by the national human rights institution of the State under review accredited in full compliance with the Paris Principles

6. With regard to the protection of vulnerable groups, it highlighted policies and bodies created to protect the rights of children, women, older persons, homeless persons, persons living with HIV/AIDS, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) persons, and indigenous peoples.

10. With regard to grass-roots democracy and socioeconomic development, the Office stated that the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela has strengthened its social policies on education, health and culture and called for the creation of mechanisms to ensure the continued application of such policies.

II. Information provided by other stakeholders

A. Background and framework

3. Institutional and human rights infrastructure and policy measures

21. JS10 underscored the absence of a national plan for the protection of the rights of children. FRPOIAMA recommended the creation of a specialized policing unit for the prevention of child abuse.

22. Four organizations commended the cooperation and solidarity programmes agreed with other countries in the areas of education, health and energy.

B. Implementation of international human rights obligations, taking into account applicable international humanitarian law

1. Equality and non-discrimination

32. JS3 asserted that the Act on the protection of equal rights for people living with HIV/AIDS marks a step forward, but that it does not meet all the criteria recommended by the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the Committee on the Rights of the Child with regard to non-discrimination.

2. Right to life, liberty and security of the person

35. JS11 highlighted that in 2015 the murder rate rose to 90 per 100,000 inhabitants. FRPOIAMA reported that the number of violent deaths among children and adolescents has not declined, with 912 killed in 2014. JS6 pointed out that there is no system for the collection of disaggregated statistical data.

42. With regard to the recommendations on human trafficking, PAS and FDIM welcomed initiatives to prevent and punish such offences and recommended introducing incentives to encourage greater community participation. OMIAW reported that in some areas trafficking and prostitution of indigenous girls, adolescents and women are controlled by non-State armed groups acting in partnership with Venezuelan soldiers and miners.

7. Right to social security and to an adequate standard of living

79. FMB200-Anz stated that social investment remains a priority.JS28 noted that the commitment to respecting human rights is reflected in the policies and operation of the Social Missions. JS41 underscored the progress made in implementing recommendations on poverty eradication. According to JS11, recommendations linked to the rights to education, health, housing and food that are listed as having been implemented or being in the process of implementation have not in fact been fulfilled.

80. A total of 487 organizations called for the continuation of social investment policies and programmes focused on education, health, housing, economic activity, development and the environment, including the Barrio Adentro, Ribas, Sucre, Robinsón, Agrovenezuela, A toda Venezuela, En Amor Mayor, Hijos de Venezuela, Jóvenes de la Patria, Alimentación, Identidad, Madres del Barrio and Guacaipuro Missions, the Great Venezuelan Housing Mission, the Great Sucre Mission and the Great Cubanas Mission (Barrio Adentro Deportivo, Salud).

82. Around 15 organizations expressed concern about the food and nutrition situation. JS38 noted the lack of official data on child malnutrition. JS34 indicated that there is no objective mechanism for evaluating the Food Mission and recommended boosting food production.

8. Right to health

88. JS6 indicated that the programme and plan for safe, wanted and happy motherhood are based on a populist, maternalist handout-oriented approach. JS11 stated that there are no public policies to address teenage pregnancies.

9. Right to education

91. A total of 40 organizations reported advances in the provision of free education at all levels (primary, secondary and university). They welcomed educational programmes such as the Mission Robinson “Yo sí puedo” (yes, I can) programme, the Ribas and Sucre missions, the Simoncito project, and computer literacy and online training initiatives, noting that these programmes have been recognized by the Organization of Ibero-American States for Education, Science and Culture and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Some organizations recommended that access to high-quality public education should be improved and current education legislation should be maintained.

92. JS31 reported positive outcomes including a reduction in school dropout rates and the introduction of a school meals programme. CEAAL recommended further improving access to free high-quality education, ensuring that teachers receive appropriate training, and safeguarding their rights.

93. IHRC-OU-Norman-Oklahoma stated that children in rural areas, indigenous and afro-descendant people, refugee children, and asylum seekers faced barriers in achieving adequate education. CATEDRAGUAICAIPURO reported a shortage of indigenous teachers and a lack of funding for mother-tongue and bilingual textbooks.

94. VeneDiver referred to the harassment and degrading treatment that caused LGBTI persons to drop out of education. UNAF indicated that teachers and educational authorities do not know how to address issues of sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.

95. JS1 reported that national autonomous universities have been discriminated against in the allocation of budgets, that student organizations at these universities have been stigmatized and that legitimate protests led by these organizations have been criminalized.

Accepted and Rejected Recommendations

The following recommendations will be examined by the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, which will provide responses in due time, but no later than the thirty-fourth session of the Human Rights Council (not available in English):

133.10 Continue intensifying the measures to reduce early pregnancy, strengthening training on sexual and reproductive rights (Dominican Republic);

133.27 Reform the Education Act in order to achieve its compliance with international standards on the protection of the right to autonomy and academic freedom (Slovenia);

133.55 Expedite the process to finalize the national plan of action for children and adolescents (2015-2019) (Maldives);

133.60 Continue its efforts to finalize the national plan for the comprehensive protection of children and adolescents (2015-2019) (State of Palestine);

133.61 Finalize the national plan of action for children and adolescents and establish a pertinent monitoring mechanism for its implementation (Turkey);

133.143 Step up efforts to prevent discrimination and violence against women and girls (Ukraine);

133.145 Take serious measures to end violence against women and children (Bahrain);

133.146 Take specific targeted measures to eliminate violence against women and girls, including the establishment of a coordinating body (Namibia);

133.147 Improve the human rights system protecting young people and children and take measures to prevent juvenile delinquency (Belarus);

133.148 Make progress in the prevention and mitigation of the negative impact on the rights of children and adolescents caused by different sources of violence (Colombia);

133.149 Set measures to prevent violence against children and prohibit corporal punishment of children (Liechtenstein);

133.150 Consider the recommendation of various treaty bodies regarding the elimination of pre-military training in schools (Peru);

133.153 Strengthen its efforts to eliminate discrimination against women and girls, supported by the bill on human trafficking (Dominican Republic);

133.219 Continue to provide resources and develop strategies for youth development, including for the achievement of a greater higher education completion rate for all, the retention of pregnant girls and adolescent mothers in school, the provision of technical and vocational skills and the expansion of social and economic opportunities for youth (Malaysia);

133.227 Continue to implement policies and programmes to guarantee the rights to education, health and food, in addition to combating poverty (El Salvador);

133.234 Continue efforts to improve health and education services to ensure equal access for all citizens (Myanmar);

133.245 Take additional measures to fight early pregnancies (Togo);

133.250 Continue its increasing investment in education (Islamic Republic of Iran);

133.251 Continue updating curricular content and methods (Lao People’s Democratic Republic); 133.252 Continue the improvement and enhancing of the use of information and communications technologies in education (Qatar);

133.253 Take the necessary measures to ensure that education promotes respect for human rights and participation in a free society (State of Palestine);

133.255 Pursue its policies to increase schooling at all levels and through all educational systems (Algeria);

133.256 Continue implementing the good policies for improving the education infrastructure (China);

133.257 Continue implementing the recommendations arising from the national consultation on quality education (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea);

133.259 Ensure that education promotes the full respect of human rights and the active participation in a free society (Guatemala);

133.260 Continue its efforts and successful measures to ensure full access to education and health care for all its citizens, especially disadvantaged groups (Dominican Republic);

133.261 Ensure inclusive education in line with the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Israel);

133.262 Adopt more innovative approaches to teen pregnancies and continued schooling of teen mothers through the sharing of experiences and best practices with partners (Jamaica);

133.264 Address the specific needs of children with disabilities in all areas, in particular education (Slovenia);

133.268 Continue enhancing the school infrastructure for indigenous communities in order to guarantee an increase in intercultural and bilingual education centres (South Sudan).


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