Concluding Observations for Germany's Initial OPSC Report

Below is a short summary of some of the key issues from the Committee on the Rights of the Child's 65th session concluding observations for Germany’s initial report on the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography (OPSC). Read the full text, and you can find other documents related to the Committee's 65th session (including alternative reports submitted by NGOs and the Committee's concluding observations for other States reviewed in this session) on the Committee's 65th session page. Please note that these are not official UN summaries.

Implementation: The Committee remains concerned that the criminal legislation does not reflect the definition of sale of children as provided by the protocol, and that cases such as sexual exploitation, transfer of organs of the child for profit, engagement in child forced labour, and illegal adoption are not criminalised in the context of sale of children, as required. The Committee recommends that the State party continue to revise and bring all relevant legislation into full compliance with the protocol.

Training and resources: The Committee is concerned that the training activities are not sufficiently focused on all the provisions of the protocol and do not address in a proper way the relevant professionals working with and for children, particularly members of the judiciary. The Committee recommends that the State party strengthen training activities and allocate sufficient resources for training all professionals involved in the protocol’s implementation.

Sex tourism: The Committee regrets the lack of information on the implementation of policies to prevent child sex tourism and on cases of sex tourism that have been prosecuted in the State party.

Protecting children of all ages: The Committee notes with concern that some provisions of the Criminal code punishing crimes under the protocol, particularly child pornography, only protect children up to the age of 14. The Committee recommends that the State party ensure that all children under the age of 18 are fully protected.

Migrant children: The Committee is concerned about the insufficient witness protection for child victims coming from abroad, who are not always perceived as victims but might be considered criminals. Furthermore, the Committee notes with concern that children who have become victims and who are in situation of irregular migration, or whose residence status is unclear cannot adequately benefit from the protective provisions. The Committee recommends that the State party ensure that child victims are not subject to criminal punishment, are considered as victims and are given equal access to protective provisions.

Victim’s rights: The Committee notes with concern that child victims and witnesses frequently do not receive sufficient information about their procedural rights. Furthermore, while welcoming the possibility of audio-visual recordings of witnesses, the Committee is concerned at its limited use.

Rehabilitation: The Committee is concerned about the insufficient measures for the recovery and reintegration of victims, particularly concerning boys or unaccompanied children, including the low number of counselling centres for children affected by child-pornography or by forced labour exploitation. The Committee also notes with concern the lack of support to families of child victims of trafficking, child prostitution and child pornography. The Committee recommends that the State party take all necessary measures to ensure that child victims and their families are provided appropriate assistance and that all child victims have access to adequate procedures to seek compensation for damages.


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