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Summary: This report extracts mentions of children's rights issues in the reports of all UN Treaty Bodies and their follow-up procedures. This does not include the Concluding Observations of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child which are available here: http://www.crin.org/resources/treaties/index.asp
UN Human Rights Committee
- UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
UN Committee against Torture
- UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
- UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
- UN Committee on Migrant Workers
- UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
- UN Committee on Enforced Disappearance
Last reported: 19 and 20 October 2015
Concluding Observations issued: 3 November 2015
Persons with disabilities: The Committee notes with concern the discrimination faced by persons with disabilities, in particular with regard to access to education, employment and health services and further regrets the impact of the economic crises and austerity measures on their situation. While noting the information provided by the State party that physical restraints on mental health patients are only used as a measure of last resort, the Committee is concerned at reports indicating the continuing widespread use of such measures, including the use of enclosed restraint beds (cages/net beds) and systematic sedation as a means to restrain patients with intellectual disabilities, including children, in institutions. (arts. 2, 7, 9, 10 and 24) (para 9)
The State party should strengthen the measures taken to protect persons with disabilities from discrimination, particularly with regard to access to education, employment and health services. The State party should take immediate measures to abolish the use of enclosed restraint beds and systematic sedation in psychiatric and related institutions. Furthermore, the State party should establish an independent monitoring and reporting system, and ensure that abuses are effectively investigated and prosecuted and that redress is provided to the victims and their families. (para 10)
Discrimination against Roma: The Committee reiterates its concern (CCPR/CO/83/GRC, para. 18) regarding the de facto discrimination against Roma, including reports of the continuation of de facto segregation of Roma children in the education sector, widespread unemployment and insufficient access to housing. The Committee is concerned about forced evictions of Roma from their homes, such as the execution of the eviction order delivered on 10 September 2013 at the municipality of Acharne in which 14 buildings inhabited by Roma families were demolished (arts. 2, 24, 26 and 27). (para 17)
The State party should fully implement the National Roma Integration Strategy and consider establishing a consolidated plan with concrete goals, indicators and adequate budgetary allocations that contains measures to promote equal access by Roma to various opportunities and services at regional and municipal levels. The State party should take immediate steps to eradicate the segregation of Roma children in its education system by ensuring that placement in schools is not determined by the child’s ethnic group. The State party should strictly limit the use of forced evictions (from public land) through the adoption of all feasible alternatives to eviction, including alternative housing for those families who were evicted. (para 18)
Trafficking and forced labour: The Committee remains concerned (CCPR/CO/83/GRC, para. 10) about cases of trafficking in persons, including children, for purposes of labour and sexual exploitation. It is concerned about the insufficient identification and investigation of cases of trafficking, the low number of prison sentences imposed on perpetrators and the insufficient support granted to victims. The Committee is further concerned about reported cases of migrants working in slavery-like conditions in the agricultural sector (arts. 2, 8, 9, 14, 24 and 26). (para 21)
In line with the Committee’s previous concluding observations (CCPR/CO/83/GRC, para. 10), the State party should continue its efforts to combat trafficking in persons, inter alia, by strengthening its preventive measures, increasing victim identification and protection, including by considering the establishment of a national database for trafficking victims, and systematically and vigorously investigating allegations of trafficking in persons, prosecuting and punishing those responsible and providing effective remedies to victims. The State party should review its laws and regulations to ensure full protection against forced labour for all categories of workers, and ensure effective oversight of labour conditions. It should also provide training to law enforcement and border and immigration officials, as well as to other relevant agencies such as labour law enforcement agencies and child welfare agencies. (para 22)
Unaccompanied minors: The Committee reiterates its previous concern (CCPR/CO/83/GRC, para. 17) about the situation of unaccompanied minors seeking asylum or illegally residing in the State party. In particular, the Committee expresses its concern over (a) the difficulties faced by the State party in assigning guardianship; (b) the inadequate conditions of detention facilities in which unaccompanied minors are held and their placement in detention facilities together with adults; and (c) the difficulties faced by the State party in determining the age of unaccompanied minors. (para 31)
The State party should ensure that the principle of the best interests of the child is given due consideration in all decisions concerning unaccompanied children, including by: (a) Ensuring that unaccompanied minors who enter the country in an irregular manner are not detained, or remain in detention only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest period of time necessary; (b) Creating new reception facilities and increasing the number of detention spaces in already existing structures, while ensuring adequate conditions for unaccompanied minors in those facilities, including segregation of unaccompanied minors from adults; (c) Pursuing its efforts to redesign the guardian assignment procedure and ensure that each unaccompanied child is provided with a legal guardian; and (d) Ensuring that the age assessment procedure is based on safe and scientific methods, take the children’s mental well-being into account and avoid all risks of violating their physical integrity. (para 32)
Last reported: 22 and 23 March 2005
Concluding Observations adopted: 31 March 2005
Trafficking: The Committee notes that Greece is a main transit route for trafficking in human beings, as well as a country of destination. While welcoming the efforts made by the State party to fight this scourge, it remains concerned, in particular, about the reported lack of effective protection of the victims, many of whom are women and children, including witness protection mechanisms (arts. 3, 8 and 24).
a) The State party should continue to take measures to combat trafficking in human beings, which constitutes a violation of several Covenant rights, including articles 3 and 24. The human rights of the victims of trafficking should be protected, including by providing a place of refuge as well as an opportunity to give evidence against the persons responsible in criminal or civil proceedings.
(b) The Committee urges the State party to protect unaccompanied alien children and to avoid the unsupervised release of such children into the general population. The absence of child welfare protection increases the danger of trafficking and exposes the children to other risks. The State party should conduct a judicial investigation concerning the approximately 500 children who went missing from the Aghia Varvara institution between 1998 and 2002 and provide the Committee with information on the outcome. (paragraph 10)
Religious discrimination: The Committee is concerned at allegations of discrimination against members of minority religions, including in the field of education. In particular, public school students are required to attend instructional classes in the Christian Orthodox religion and can opt out only after declaring their religion (art. 18).
(a) The State party should take measures to ensure full respect for the rights and freedoms of each religious community, in conformity with the Covenant.
(b) The Committee encourages the State party to hold consultations with representatives of minority religions, in order to find practical ways to permit religious instruction to be given to those desiring such opportunities. Pupils not wishing to attend religious education classes should not be obliged to declare their religion. (paragraph 14)
Corporal punishment: While noting that a legislative amendment to ban corporal punishment in secondary schools has been tabled in Parliament, the Committee is concerned at reports of a widespread practice of corporal punishment of children in the schools (art. 24).
The Committee recommends that the State party prohibit all forms of violence against children wherever it occurs, including corporal punishment in the schools, and undertake public information efforts with respect to appropriate protection of children from violence. (paragraph 16)
Unaccompanied minors: The Committee is also concerned at the reported neglect of the situation of unaccompanied minors seeking asylum or illegally residing in the country (art. 24).
The Committee recommends that the State party develop a procedure to address the specific needs of unaccompanied non-citizen children and to ensure their best interests in the course of any immigration, expulsion and related proceedings. (paragraph 17)
UN Human Rights Committee: Follow-up
Follow-up information on paragraph 10 requested by 25 April 2006.
No information to date.
UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
Last reported: 5 and 6 October 2015
Concluding Observations issued: 27 Ocober 2015
Economic exploitation of children: In the light of its previous recommendations (see E/C.12/1/Add.97, paras. 19 and 40), the Committee remains concerned at the incidence of child labour, including forced begging and informal and dangerous work on the streets, and that children in such situations are exposed to exploitation and trafficking in persons (art. 10). (para 31)
The Committee urges the State party to intensify efforts to combat child labour, including through systematic and effective labour inspections and by investigating, prosecuting and sanctioning those responsible and providing victims with rehabilitation and assistance. It should also undertake awareness-raising campaigns for employers and parents on the dangers of child labour and the importance of education, and systematically collect data to assess the impact of measures taken to combat the economic exploitation of children. (para 32)
Inclusive education for children with disabilities: Despite measures taken by the State party, including Law No. 4115/2013, which facilitates the integration of students with special education needs in mainstream schools, the Committee is concerned at reports indicating that the enrolment rate of children with disabilities in schools is extremely low and that only 15 per cent of children with disabilities go to school (arts. 13 and 2 (2)). (para 39)
The Committee recommends that the State party collect data, disaggregated by sex and national or ethnic origin, on the school enrolment and drop-out rates of children with disabilities at various levels of education, to identify obstacles to accessing and continuing education and to devise appropriate strategies. The State party should also ensure that all children with disabilities have access to quality and inclusive education. (para 40)
Education for Roma children: Despite the positive measures taken by the State party, including the education priority zones project, the Committee expresses its concern at reports of a low rate of enrolment, low levels of school attendance and a high drop-out rate among, and de facto segregation of, Roma children in special schools (arts. 13 and 2 (2)). (para 41)
The Committee recommends that the State party redouble its efforts to address the insufficient level of education of Roma and immediately take measures to increase the attendance rates of Roma students and their retention in school by, inter alia, providing sufficient comprehensive measures to cover education-related expenses and raising awareness of the importance of education among Roma families. The Committee also recommends that the State party abolish procedures that lead to the de facto segregation of Roma pupils. (para 42)
Last Reported: 28 and 29 April 2004
Concluding Observations issued: 7 June 2004
Issues raised and recommendations given:
Roma Community: While acknowledging the State party’s efforts to promote the social integration of Greek Roma, the Committee remains deeply concerned about the persistent discrimination against Roma people in the fields of housing, health and education. It is particularly concerned about reported instances of police violence against Roma, sweeping arrests, and arbitrary raids of Roma settlements by the police. (Para. 11)
Abuse: The Committee notes with concern that physical and sexual abuse of children sees to occur at a relatively high rate. The Committee recommends that the State party remedy the lack of social workers with a view to improving its assistance to children suffering from physical and sexual abuse, and include in its next report updated statistical data on the number of victims, perpetrators, convictions and the types of sanctions imposed. (Paras. 17 and 38)
Trafficking: The Committee expresses its concern about the high numbers of trafficked women and children who are subjected to forced labour and sexual exploitation, and who are often deported to their countries of origin rather than being granted a residence permit, reportedly in an expeditious manner and without the necessary procedural safeguards. The Committee urges the State party to ensure respect for the necessary procedural safeguards when deporting victims of trafficking in persons, particularly when such victims are children. The State party should also continue and intensify its cooperation with neighbouring countries in combating trafficking in persons, provide medical, psychological and legal support to such victims, and include detailed information on these measures in its second periodic report. (Paras. 18 and 39)
Child labour: The Committee is concerned that, according to information received, an alleged approximate number of 5,800 children below the minimum working age of 15 years illegally work in the streets. The Committee recommends that, in compliance with article 10 of the Covenant, the State party institute criminal proceedings and takes other effective measures against parents or other persons who may be exploiting children below the minimum working age of 15 years illegally working in the streets. The State party should also take measures to ensure regular school attendance by these children, as provided for by article 13 of the Covenant. (Paras. 19 and 40)
Tobacco and alcohol consumption: The Committee notes with concern that the State party has one of the highest tobacco and alcohol consumption rates in Europe, in particular, among minors. The Committee recommends that the State party strictly enforce the prohibition of smoking in public areas and of the sale of strong alcoholic beverages to minors, adopt effective measures against “subtle” forms of tobacco and alcohol advertisement, in addition to existing restrictions, and intensify its efforts in the field of anti-smoking education and information campaigns. (Paras. 25 and 47)
Education of minority linguistic groups: The Committee is concerned that a high percentage of Roma and Turkish‑speaking children are not enrolled in school, or drop out at a very early stage of their schooling. While it is possible to receive bilingual instruction in Turkish and Greek at the two Muslim minority secondary schools in Thrace, the Committee notes with concern that no such possibility exists at the primary level or outside Thrace, and that members of other linguistic groups have no possibility to learn their mother tongue at school. The Committee urges the State party to take effective measures to increase school attendance by Roma and Turkish-speaking children, including at the secondary level, to ensure, to the extent possible, that children belonging to minority linguistic groups have an opportunity to learn their mother tongue, including regional dialects, at school, and to ensure an adequate staffing with teachers specialized in multicultural education. (Paras. 28 and 50)
Last reported: 9 / 10 May 2012
Concluding Observations issued: 27 June 2012
Juvenile justice: While noting some recent legislative initiatives, the Committee is concerned at the long periods of pretrial detention, including in the case of juveniles, due to shortcomings and considerable delays in the judicial system. The Committee is also concerned at the limited use of non-custodial measures for juvenile detainees. It is further concerned that separation between pretrial and convicted detainees as well as juveniles and adults is not always guaranteed (arts. 2 and 11). Paragraph 15.
The State party should take effective measures to considerably reduce the length of pretrial detention. Such measures include reform of the judicial system to ensure that pretrial detainees receive a fair and speedy trial, as well as application of alternative pretrial restrictions. In the case of juveniles, detention should only be used in exceptional circumstances or as a measure of last resort, on grounds specifically prescribed by law, and then only for the shortest possible time. Furthermore, the State party should ensure strict separation between pretrial and convicted detainees and between juveniles and adults in all detention facilities.
Unaccompanied children: The Committee is particularly concerned that unaccompanied or separated asylum seeking minors are often not properly registered and are systematically detained, often in mixed immigration facilities with adults. The Committee is also concerned that the transitional Presidential Decree 114/2010 did not introduce a statutory prohibition regarding the detention of these minors and that the limited number of special reception centres for unaccompanied minors contributes to their prolonged detention. It is further concerned that many unaccompanied minors end up homeless and living in the streets where they are often exposed to heightened risks of exploitation and violence (arts. 2, 11 and 16). Paragraph 22.
The State party should strengthen its efforts to provide adequate protection and proper care in respect of unaccompanied or separated minors entering the country, including by promptly amending its legislation to prohibit their detention. The Committee concurs with the recommendation of the Special Rapporteur on the question of torture that the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Interior should cooperate closely to ensure that they are placed in suitable and separate reception centres. Furthermore, specific measures should be put in place to prevent homelessness and to provide social support and education to this group.
Violence: The Committee takes note of the legislative and other measures adopted by the State party to combat violence against women, including the enactment of Law 3500/2006 for combating domestic violence and the adoption of a National Action Plan on Violence against Women (2009-2013). However, the Committee remains concerned at the persistence of violence against women and children, including domestic and sexual violence, and at the limited number of prosecutions and convictions of the perpetrators. While noting that the State party has established a Standing Committee to elaborate a draft law on combating gender-based violence against women, the Committee is concerned that the State party’s Criminal Code currently does not explicitly include rape and other forms of sexual violence as a form of torture (arts. 2, 12 and 16). Paragraph 23.
The State party should take urgent and effective protective measures to prevent and combat all forms of violence against women and girls, particularly domestic and sexual violence, including by investigating and punishing these offences. Such measures should include the amendment of article 137A of the State party’s Criminal Code so as to explicitly include rape and other forms of sexual violence as a form of torture rather than “a serious breach of sexual dignity”. The State party should also undertake broad awareness-raising campaigns and provide training courses on the prevention of violence against women and girls for officials who are in direct contact with victims (law enforcement officers, judges, lawyers, social workers, etc.) and for the general public.
Trafficking: The Committee recognizes the efforts made by the State party to address trafficking in persons. However, it expresses its concern at persistent reports of trafficking in women and children for sexual and other exploitative purposes and is concerned at the very few prosecutions and convictions of the offenders of such crimes. The Committee is also concerned that obstacles to the access to justice of the victims of such crimes include the insufficient knowledge by judges and prosecutors of the Palermo Protocol and that no interpretation services are reportedly available to the victims in trafficking trials. The Committee regrets that the support services provided to victims of trafficking with respect to health as part of their possible rehabilitation are inadequate (arts. 2, 10, 12 and 16). Paragraph 24).
The State party should ensure that all allegations concerning trafficking of persons are investigated promptly, impartially and effectively and that the offenders are prosecuted and punished for such crimes. The State party should also ensure that the victims are provided effective legal and social assistance as well as access to interpretation in the context of trials. The State party should continue to conduct nationwide awareness-raising campaigns and provide adequate programmes of assistance, recovery and reintegration for victims of trafficking. Furthermore, the State party should offer training to law enforcement officers, judges, prosecutors, migration officials and border police on the causes, consequences and repercussions of trafficking and other forms of exploitation, as well as on the Palermo Protocol.
Street children: The Committee reiterates its previous concern that502 out of 661 Albanian Roma street children reportedly went missing following their placement during 1998-2002 in the Greek Aghia Varvara children’s institution and it is particularly concerned that these cases have not been investigated by the relevant State party authorities (arts. 2 and 12). (Paragraph 27).
The Committee urges the State party to engage with the Albanian authorities with a view to promptly creating an effective mechanism to investigate these cases in order to establish the whereabouts of the missing children, in cooperation with the Ombudsmen of both countries and relevant civil society organizations, and identify disciplinary and criminal responsibilities of those involved, before the passage of time creates difficulties in ascertaining the facts. The Committee also recommends that the State party adopt a comprehensive policy to combat violations of the rights of street children in order to prevent recurrences in the future.
Last reported: 22 and 23 November 2004
Concluding Observations adopted: Not stated
(c) Training provided to public officials which may be inadequate to provide an appropriate response to the numerous challenges they are faced with, including undocumented migrants and asylum-seekers and victims of trafficking, many of whom are women and children;
Ensure that all personnel involved in the custody, detention, interrogation and treatment of detainees are trained with regard to the prohibition of torture and ill-treatment. Training should include developing skills needed to recognize the sequelae of torture and sensitization with respect to contact with particularly vulnerable persons in situations of risk;
(k) The reported prevalence of violence against women and girls, including domestic violence, and the reluctance on the part of the authorities to, inter alia, adopt legislative measures to counter this phenomenon;
Adopt legislation and other measures to combat violence against women, within the framework of plans to take measures to prevent such violence, including domestic violence, and to investigate all allegations of ill-treatment and abuse;
(l) The inadequate measures taken to protect children picked up by the Security Police and taken into State care during the period 1998-2003. In particular, the Committee notes that of the approximately 600 children taken to the Aghia Varvara children's institution, 500 reportedly went missing and that these cases were not promptly investigated by a judicial authority;
Review the modalities for protecting street children, in particular to ensure that those measures protect their rights. All decisions affecting children should, to the extent possible, be taken with due consideration for their views and concerns, with a view to finding an optimal, workable solution. The Committee urges the State party to take measures to prevent the recurrence of cases such as the Aghia Varvara children's institution. It should also ensure that a judicial investigation is carried out and provide the Committee with information on the outcome
UN Committee against Torture: Follow-up
Follow-up information requested on paragraph (k). Received 23 March 2006 - CAT/C/GRC/CO/4/Add.1
15. Police Headquarters have issued the following documents
(b) A handbook on intra-family violence, which aims at protecting human rights, especially of women and children, within the family and at informing police officers when violations occur. It is also targeted at the more systematic and complete handing of such cases, through the provision of instructions to police staff. Intra-family violence is a subject covered in police academies;
16. The phenomenon of "traffic lights children" surfaced in the early 1990's, with the entry into the country of economic immigrants who, as a rule, exploited their children financially and pushed them to beggary and self-employment.
17. Today, this phenomenon tends to be eliminated through:
(a) Daily police patrols and checks in sensitive areas especially in the centre of Athens and throughout the province of Attica;
(b) The almost complete integration of foreigners in the social tissue of the Greek society, owing to the fact that the Law on Aliens resulted in legalization of all persons who had entered the country, legitimately or not;
(c) The implementation of article 7 of Law 2010/01, by virtue of which, when minor aliens, victims of instigation of financial exploitation, are deported, their guardians are deported with them, since they are deprived of resources and the financial exploitation of minors is considered as the last resort for their survival.
18. The "Aghia Varvara" foundation, a "children's land" is a unit of the 2nd Regional Health and Welfare System of Attica (it is a legal entity in public law) and operates as a decentralized and independent unit, with administrative and financial autonomy. At present, this "children's land" provides accommodation for teenage girls (13 – 18 years old) whose parents have particular health, social or financial problems or who are totally deprived of a proper family environment. In exceptional cases the foundation may lodge teenage girls who have committed offences in the past, either by court order or by order of the Public Prosecutor of Athens for
A Request for further clarifications was sent 15 May 2008, asking for more information regarding paragraphs 17 and 18. It is unknown if a reply was given.
UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
Last reported: 19 February 2013
Concluding Observations issued: 26 March 2013
Stereotypes: The Committee continues to be seriously concerned about patriarchal attitudes and deep-rooted stereotypes regarding the roles and responsibilities of women and men in all spheres of life and the State party’s limited efforts to tackle such discriminatory practices. The Committee is concerned that such customs and practices perpetuate discrimination against women and girls and that they are reflected in women’s disadvantaged and unequal status in many areas, including education, public life and decision-making, as well as in the persistence of violence against women. It is also concerned that, to date, the State party has not taken sustained measures to modify or eliminate stereotypes and negative traditional values and practices. (Paragraph 18).
19. The Committee urges the State party to:
(a) Adopt, without delay, a comprehensive strategy to modify or eliminate patriarchal attitudes and stereotypes that discriminate against women, in conformity with the provisions of the Convention. Such measures should include efforts, at all levels, in collaboration with civil society, to educate and raise awareness on existing stereotypes among women and men;
(b) Expand public education programmes on the negative effects of stereotyping, in particular in rural and isolated areas in the archipelago;
(c) Use innovative measures that target the media to strengthen understanding of the concept of equality of women and men and to use the education system to enhance a positive and non-stereotypical portrayal of women and men;
(d) Monitor and review all the measures taken to implement the comprehensive strategy in order to assess their impact and to take appropriate further action.
Child-care facilities: The Committee is concerned that the recent high unemployment figures for women, over 31 per cent compared with 24 per cent for men, and the high hidden unemployment among women show that women are becoming highly marginalized on the labour market. The Committee also remains concerned at the persistent vertical and horizontal segregation of occupations and the wage gap between women and men. The Committee is concerned about the potential negative impact on women of Act No.4024 of 27 October 2011, which introduced a new public service statute, a new job classification and a new harmonized wage scale resulting in wage cuts of up to 50 per cent in certain cases. The Committee is further concerned that the slashing of pensions has negatively impacted the pension for widows and some other groups of women. The Committee is also concerned that Act No.3896/2010 and 3996/2011 against unfair dismissals and the extension of the period during which working mothers cannot be dismissed after their return from maternity leave to 18 months, has resulted in them being offered part time and rotation work in many cases with reduced levels of pay. The Committee is concerned that the dismantling of the social fund (OEE) and the workers´ housing organization (OEK) as social dialogue organizations has had a negative impact on housing services and resulted in significant interruptions of the operation and maintenance of nurseries and child-care facilities. The Committee is also concerned at the absence of statistical data disaggregated by sex on complaints related to gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment at the workplace, as well as at the lack of data on the situation of employment among the Muslim minority ofThraceand Roma women. (Paragraph 28).
Violence: The Committee notes the adoption of the National Programme for Preventing and Combating Violence against Women for 2009 – 2013 and the abolition of the use of mediation in cases of domestic violence. It is, however, concerned at the persistence of violence against women, including domestic violence, in the State party, which remains underreported due to the prevalence of discriminatory social and cultural norms. The Committee is further concerned at the lack of information, studies and statistical data on the nature, forms, extent and causes of violence against women (Paragraph 20).
21. The Committee urges the State party to give priority attention to combating violence against women and girls and adopt comprehensive measures to address such violence, in accordance with its general recommendation No.19 (1992), including through:
(a) Ensuring the strict enforcement of the national legislation on violence against women and ensuring that women and girls who are victims of violence have access to immediate means of redress and protection and further ensuring that perpetrators are prosecuted and punished;
(b) Raising public awareness, through the media and educational programmes and providing mandatory training for judges, prosecutors, police officers, health-service providers, journalists and teaching staff in order to ensure that they are sensitized to all forms of violence against women and girls and can provide adequate gender-sensitive support to victims;
(c) Encouraging women to report incidents of domestic and sexual violence by de-stigmatizing victims and raising awareness about the criminal nature of such acts;
(d) Providing adequate assistance and protection to women victims of violence by establishing shelters, especially in rural areas, and enhancing cooperation with non-governmental organizations providing shelter and rehabilitation to victims;
(e) Collecting statistical data on all forms of violence against women, including domestic violence disaggregated by sex, age, ethnicity/minority status and relationship between victim and perpetrator, and undertaking studies and/or surveys on the extent of violence against women and its root causes.
Trafficking: While noting the adoption of the National Action Plan to combat trafficking for 2010 – 2012, the Committee is, however, concerned at the lack of information on its effective implementation and on whether it has been extended beyond 2012. The Committee is also concerned about the stigmatization of prostitutes suffering from HIV/AIDS by public blaming campaigns pointing out individuals. The Committee is further concerned at the lack of statistical data, disaggregated by sex and geographical location, on trafficking and exploitation of prostitution in the State party. The Committee is also concerned about the limited efforts of the State party to prevent the exploitation of prostitution and to address its root causes, as well as the lack of protection and assistance available to victims of trafficking and exploitation (Paragraph 22).
23. The Committee calls upon the State party to fully implement article 6 of the Convention and:
(a) Ensure effective implementation of the national anti-trafficking legislation;
(b) Conduct studies and surveys including on the prevalence of prostitution and seek international assistance as required and include in its next periodic report updated information and data on the prevalence of exploitation of prostitution and trafficking in women and girls;
(c) Increase efforts aimed at international, regional and bilateral cooperation with countries of origin, transit and destination to prevent trafficking through information exchange and harmonizing legal procedures to prosecute traffickers;
(d) Address the root causes of trafficking and prostitution, including poverty, in order to reduce the vulnerability of women and girls to sexual exploitation and trafficking, and to ensure the rehabilitation and social integration of victims, including by providing them with shelter and assistance.
Health: The Committee notes the adoption of the National Action Plan for Sexual and Reproductive Rights 2008-2012. It is, however, concerned that the State party has a very high rate of abortions and a very low use of high quality, efficient methods of contraception, which means that women resort to abortions as a method of family planning. The Committee is also concerned at the extremely high rate of caesarean sections performed in public (40 per cent) and private (up to 65 per cent) hospitals without medical justification, the Greek rates being the highest in the world, way above the 15 per cent rate considered by the World Health Organization (WHO) as covering medical needs. The Committee further notes the National Action Plan 2008-2012 on HIV-AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases, but is concerned that since 2010 the rise in the number of HIV/AIDS cases is over 57 per cent, and that there has been a stark increase in the number of people dying of HIV-AIDS from 2007-2009, figures unknown for subsequent years. The Committee is also concerned that education on sexual and reproductive health and rights is insufficient. Further, it is concerned that budget cuts in the health sector will mainly affect women’s and girls’ health. Paragraph 30.
31. The Committee urges the State party to:
(a) Improve and increase access, as well as use of effective and affordable methods of contraception, including by subsidizing them, in order to starkly reduce the practice of abortion as a method of family planning;
(b) Reduce the rate of caesarean sections performed without medical necessity by training or retraining medical personnel on natural birth and introduce strict control of medical indications for caesarean sections in order to reach the WHO recognized rates;
(c) Improve the quality and accessibility of sexual and reproductive health services and guarantee their access to disadvantaged groups of women;
(d) Promote education on sexual and reproductive health and rights, especially targeting adolescent girls and boys, in order to foster responsible sexual behaviour, prevention of early pregnancies and of sexually transmitted infections, including HIV-AIDS;
(e) Increase the percentage of the health budget allocated to sexual and reproductive health services.
Asylum-seekers; While noting the creation of a new Asylum Service Department independent from the police and the establishment of the First Reception Service responsible for screening procedures, the Committee is concerned at the difficult situation faced by women in prison, particularly with regard to severe overcrowding of cells, non-separation of pretrial and convicted detainees, as well as administrative detainees together with criminal detainees, detention of irregular migrants and refugee and asylum seekers and women’s limited access to adequate health facilities and services, free legal aid, as well at the lack of effective judicial review and prolonged arbitrary detention.
35. The Committee urges the State party to:
(a) Take measures to reduce the number of women in detention, including through targeted prevention programmes aimed at addressing the causes of women’s criminality;
(b) Address the situation of women and girls in detention through the development of comprehensive gender-sensitive policies, strategies and programmes aimed at facilitating their access to justice and ensuring compliance with their fair trial guarantees; and providing educational, rehabilitative and resettlement programmes for women and girls;
(c) Improve the conditions of women’s detention facilities in accordance with international standards, to solve the problem of overcrowding in prisons, guarantee separate accommodation for different categories of detainees; and ensure the provision of adequate health facilities and services, in accordance with the United Nations Rules for the Treatment of Women Prisoners and Non-custodial Measures for Women Offenders (the Bangkok Rules).
Last reported: 24 January 2007
Concluding Observations adopted: Not stated.
Stereotypes: The Committee notes with concern the persistence of patriarchal attitudes and deep-rooted stereotypes regarding the roles and responsibilities of women and men in the family and society. These stereotypes present a significant impediment to the implementation of the Convention and are a root cause of violence against women, as well as of the disadvantaged position of women in a number of areas, including in all sectors of the labour market and in political and public life. (paragraph 13)
The Committee recommends that the State party take measures to bring about changes in traditional patriarchal attitudes and in gender-role stereotyping. Such measures should include awareness-raising and public educational campaigns addressed at women and girls, as well as, in particular, men and boys, with a view to eliminating stereotypes associated with traditional gender roles in the family and in society, in accordance with articles 2 (f) and 5 (a) of the Convention. It also recommends that the State party further clarify the causes of persistent inequality between women and men, including through studies on the institutional rules that reinforce gender-role stereotyping, the specific manifestations of stereotypical ideology in the State party, the costs of placing the burden of homemaking solely on women and the monetary value of women's unpaid labour, and use the insights gained as basis for taking enhanced measures to address these stereotypes. (paragraph 14)
Trafficking: While welcoming the various measures implemented to combat trafficking, including the revision of legislation and the adoption of an integrated National Plan of Action against Trafficking in Human Beings, the Committee remains concerned about the persistence of trafficking in women and girls and about the insufficient enforcement of legislation on trafficking. (paragraph 21)
The Committee requests the State party to effectively implement the integrated National Plan of Action against Trafficking in Human Beings. It also calls upon the State party to ensure that legislation on trafficking is fully enforced, in particular by effectively prosecuting and punishing offenders. It also recommends that the State party increase its efforts to prevent human trafficking and provide assistance and support to women victims. (paragraph 22)
Sexual and reproductive health: The Committee is concerned that, due to inadequate access to family planning and contraceptive methods, abortion is often used by women and adolescent girls as a method of birth control. It regrets the lack of data about the incidence of abortion disaggregated by age and ethnic group of the persons undergoing it. The Committee is also concerned about the high number of caesarean sections performed. (paragraph 25)
The Committee recommends that the State party implement programmes and policies aimed at providing effective access for women, including minority women and adolescent girls, to health-care information and contraceptives, and to family planning services, thus avoiding the need for women to resort to abortion as a method of birth control. The Committee urges the State party to implement programmes of sexual and reproductive health education for men, women and adolescents in order to foster responsible sexual behaviour. The Committee further calls on the State party to implement initiatives, in close consultation with the medical profession, aimed at reducing the number of caesarean sections performed. (paragraph 26)
Birth registration: The Committee expresses concern about the lack of information on the situation of immigrant women who are unable to obtain birth certificates for their children. (paragraph 31)
The Committee calls upon the State party to take measures in order to ensure that children of immigrant women are provided with birth certificates. (paragraph 32)
Early marriage: The Committee urges the State party to increase efforts to raise the awareness of Muslim women of their rights and of remedies against violations, and to ensure that they benefit from the provisions of Greek law on marriage and inheritance. The Committee call upon the State party to enforce its laws prohibiting early marriages and polygamy and to take comprehensive measures aimed at eliminating these practices, in line with the Greek constitutional order, article 16 of the Convention and the Committee's general recommendation 21 on equality in marriage and family relations. (paragraph 34)
While welcoming the work of the Research Centre for Gender Equality aimed at supporting Government policy on the promotion of gender equality and the advancement of women, the Committee notes with concern that the results of the studies carried out by the research centre, especially on minority women, have not been included in the State party's report. (paragraph 35)
UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
Observations adopted: 26 August 2016
Treatment of migrants: The Committee is aware that the recent migrant crisis has put a heavy burden on the State party. The Committee welcomes the many steps taken in this regard, including the reforms undertaken in the asylum system and the opening of several new regional asylum offices, as well as extending the coverage of basic health care to vulnerable undocumented migrants. The Committee however remains concerned about: Detention of undocumented migrants entering the State party including families and children, for periods exceeding the maximum legal period of administrative detention combined with lack of due-process guarantees while in detention; Substandard conditions of the reception and identification centres on the islands, and the chaotic situation in these centres, disproportionately impacting women and children who encounter higher risk to sexual violence with inadequate response from the authorities; The ineffectiveness of the guardianship system for unaccompanied children, the lack of sufficient appropriate accommodation for such children, and the de facto practice of detaining them, including in substandard conditions and with unrelated adults (para 22).
The Committee calls on the State party to increase its efforts to implement the specific rights of persons fleeing armed conflict or persecution arriving to its shores. The Committee also calls on the State party to ensure the respect of the rights of migrants arriving in the same migratory flows as refugees and asylum-seekers. These efforts could be stepped up also through strengthened international cooperation, in particular by EU countries. The Committee further urges the State party to: Eliminate automatic detention of migrants arriving to the Islands after the conclusion of the EU-Turkey statement, introduce alternatives to detention, ensure that those deprived of their liberty enjoy due-process, and take measures to convert the reception and identifications centres on the islands into open centres; Take immediate measures to improve the living conditions in reception and identification centres and ensure that everyone in these centres has access to medical care, interpreters, adequate food, and social support; Uphold the rule of law in reception and identification centres and redouble its measures to protect everyone staying in these centres from all forms of violence; Expedite its efforts in developing a solid guardianship system and appoint qualified guardians to unaccompanied children (para 23).
Last reported: 10 and 11 August 2009
Concluding Observations adopted: 24 August 2009
Treatment of asylum seekers: The Committee is concerned about reported cases of ill-treatment of asylum-seekers and illegal immigrants, including unaccompanied children.
The Committee recommends that the State party take more effective measures necessary to treat asylum-seekers humanely and to reduce as much as possible the period of detention of asylum-seekers, in particular children. (paragraph 12)
UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination: Follow-up
Follow-up information requested on paragraph 12 within one year. No follow-up information available.
UN Committee on Migrant Workers
No report available
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
No report available
UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances
No report available