The new “Code on the Rights of the Child” came into force on September 1, 2020. This Code is a declaratory document that should be followed by the Georgian authorities, municipal bodies, other administrative bodies, common courts, public and private law entities and individuals in carrying out activities related to children and child issues. In practice, this means that the Code provides legal guarantees that make it easier for children to independently assert their rights in child-friendly institutions of justice and through other mechanisms.
The purpose of this Code is to ensure the welfare of the child by facilitating the effective implementation of the Constitution of Georgia, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, its Additional Protocols and other international legal acts recognized by the State. This Code does not supersede other legislation relating to the rights of the child. The Code defines the legal definition of “adolescent” and it refers to a child from 10 to 18 years of age. Article 40 of the Code provides for civil liability for the provision of information threatening a child, which includes information aimed at inciting violence or crime, information of sexual content, etc. According to Article 13 of the Code of the Rights of the Child, children are entitled to access information or other information and / or official documents available to them in a public institution in accordance with the law. Article 39 of the Code also established the need to establish independent and impartial mechanisms for reviewing child complaints in early and pre-school education, general education and vocational education institutions, and the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports of Georgia was instructed to develop these independent mechanisms. The Code of the Rights of the Child strengthens the right to appeal to an administrative body and / or a court and basic procedural guarantees. In particular, according to Article 76 of the Code, priority was given to the administrative body and the court to consider petitions, complaints and lawsuits related to the child. The Code also provides for the establishment of specific mechanisms for the protection of children’s rights. For example, it lays the foundation for the creation of a child-friendly justice system and creates a state system that ensures the well-being and safety of all children. The Code introduces family assistance programs and completely prohibits corporal punishment in all types of environments.