NEWS AND EVENTS
February 24, 2010
Protecting the rights and interests of children
– a priority of the State policy
Upbringing harmoniously developed and healthy young generation is one of the priorities of State policy in Uzbekistan, where more than 40% of the population are young people under 18.
From the first days of independence, great attention is being paid to the legal, economic and social protection of motherhood and childhood in Uzbekistan, creating conditions for comprehensive development and upbringing youth in the spirit of human values.
In December 1992 Uzbekistan has ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Along with 189 countries Uzbekistan also signed the Declaration on Millennium Development Goals and “World Fit for Children”.
In accordance with these documents Uzbek Government has adopted in 2007 a National Program of Action to improve the welfare of children in Uzbekistan. The program will last until 2011 and includes ongoing monitoring and studying the situation of children in education, health, leisure, family, work, vocational training, protection from adverse effects of modern life.
One of the important ways to ensure child’s interests is to undertake practical measures aimed at guaranteeing their rights. Thus, the State has implemented several important government programs in this sphere.
Systematic protection of child’s rights is carried out both at the legislative and institutional levels. Systematical approach is consisted in adoption and implementation of national programs that include a range of measures fulfilled by government agencies and institutions, as well as NGOs.
There is a growth and intensification of the activity of NGOs aimed at ensuring the rights of children and youth. For example, there is a system of nation-wide NGOs that are specialized in various areas of ensuring and protecting children’s rights: “Kamalot” - Youth Movement of Uzbekistan, supports the initiatives, political and leadership activities of youth; “Sen yolg’iz emassan” Fund (“You are not alone”) – supports orphans, children left without parental care, children with disabilities, children from poor families; Children\\\'s Fund of Uzbekistan – supports children initiatives under their direct participation (Children\\\'s Parliament) ; “Soglom avlod uchun” Fund (“For healthy generation”) – implements medical and educational programs and promotes healthy lifestyles, “Forum of Culture and Arts of Uzbekistan” Foundation – projects supporting gifted children.
The Government has also adopted a National Plan Action on implementation of ILO Conventions 138 and 182, proposing a series of draft laws in order to harmonize the national legislation with the provisions of the conventions, to control and monitor the implementation of the Convention and to conduct awareness-raising activities.
Uzbekistan regularly presents national reports on implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child to the UN Committee. In order to implement the Concluding observations and recommendations of the Committee, the Government of Uzbekistan has developed the National Plan of Action and proposed more than 15 legal documents.
At the end of 2009, the Parliament of the Republic of Uzbekistan has adopted Amendments to the Code of administrative responsibility, increasing penalties for use of child labor. The amendments were drafted in accordance with the National Action Plan of implementation of the ILO Conventions concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor and the Convention on Minimum Age for Admission to Employment, both ratified by Uzbekistan in 2008.
According to the decision of the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare, the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Uzbekistan “On Approval of the Regulation on requirements to prevent the use of child labor” (15 January 2010) employers are prohibited from using minors in the work carried out in difficult conditions - underground, water, at dangerous heights or in confined spaces, with dangerous machinery, equipment and tools, with the unhealthy conditions under which minors may be exposed to hazardous substances or processes, or temperature, noise or vibrations that are detrimental to his health.
Using minors at work involving the lifting and moving heavy loads for long hours, night work and the work, which by its nature can damage the morality of this category of workers is also prohibited.
The parents or in loco parentis persons are also responsible for the health of the children at using their work.
In particular, parents are prohibited from forcing children under the threat of violence or any penalty to work in these conditions.
The duration of work time should not exceed 36 hours per week for the students aged between 16 and 18 and 24 hours for youth aged between 15 to 16 years who work during the academic year in their leisure time.
At the same time wages for minor workers with a shortened duration of daily work performed by the same amount as for the corresponding categories of employees in full working day, and the work of students, working in factories in their leisure time, to be paid based on hours worked or according to productivity.
According to the decree, students are barred from working practice not related to their specialty or in hazardous conditions of work.