Viet Nam takes significant steps toward a comprehensive child justice law
Ha Noi, 31st August 2022 - A consultation workshop was held today in Ha Noi organized by the Supreme People’s Court of Viet Nam and UNICEF with the support of the European Union Justice and Legal Empowerment Programme (EU JULE) to learn from the experience of countries that have adopted child justice laws. By sharing international and regional experiences and best practices, the workshop served as a forum to discuss about strategic measures to improve justice for minors and to develop an outline for a comprehensive child justice law.
“The ideas and recommendations of experts and participants are important contributions for the Supreme People's Court to consider and propose the National Assembly Standing Committee to include the juvenile justice law project in the 2023 Law and Ordinance Development Program”, said Chief Justice Nguyen Hoa Binh.
In the recent years, the Government of Viet Nam has made considerable effort to reform legislation pertaining to justice for minors in recent years. However, special handling measures for minors in conflict with the law are still scattered across the Penal Code, Criminal Procedure Code, and Law on Handling of Administrative Violations. This results in fragmentation and challenges in ensuring coherent, effective and efficient implementation.
“UNICEF is fully engaged with this significant step toward a comprehensive Law on Justice for Minors. We applaud the adoption of a holistic approach to introduce strategic changes for increased access to justice for all minors in conflict with the law, as well as victims and witnesses of crime.”, said Lesley Miller, UNICEF Deputy Representative in Viet Nam.
Recognizing the unique vulnerabilities of minors, the Convention on the Rights of the Child requires the establishment of a separate system with a specialized approach when working with minors in conflict with the law. Central to such a system is having a comprehensive law on justice for minors, as many countries have adopted, including most ASEAN countries.
“A comprehensive Law on Justice for Minors is the corner stone of a child-friendly justice system, outlining a distinct set of principles, objectives, procedures, and services that have been specially adapted to minors. The European Union will continue to support Viet Nam with this effort”, said Thomas Wiersing, Chargé d’Affaires of the Delegation of the European Union to Viet Nam.
International keynote speakers, experts from relevant committees of the National Assembly, line ministries, professional and mass organizations, supreme and provincial courts, and development agencies participated in this workshop. Issues discussed included the need of an effective inter-agency collaboration and coordination; child- and gender-sensitive handling of minors; a coherent continuum of sanctions and measures; the role of social workers in all stages of the child justice procedures; and the development of social welfare services for community-based rehabilitation of minors.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. For more information about COVID-19, visit https://www.unicef.org/vietnam/covid-19
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit https://www.unicef.org/vietnam