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Human Rights Council – Universal Periodic Review

For use of information media; not an official record

Date: Monday 25 January 2011 (Afternoon)

Country under review: SAINT LUCIA

Documents: The national report, A/HRC/WG.6/10/LCA/1, the compilation report, A/HRC/WG.6/10/LCA/2 and the summary of stakeholders information, A/HRC/WG.6/10/LCA/3.

Troika: Ghana, Maldives, Uruguay

Concerned country - national report

  • Represented by a 2-members delegation and headed by H.E. Dr. Donatus Keith St. Aimee, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of St Lucia to the United Nations in New York
  • National report presented by the Head of delegation

Highlights

  • National report prepared in consultation with stakeholders
  • Human rights enshrined in the Constitution
  • Party to a number of international and regional human rights instruments
  • Dramatic decrease in extreme poverty also due to State sponsored programmes
  • Programmes aiming at securing and improving access to quality health care
  • New mental Wellness Centre and mental health reform focusing on institutional and community based care.
  • Measure addressing the root causes of social disintegration and its negative impact on children. Increased risks of antisocial behaviour.
  • Assistance to children victims of abuses
  • Compulsory education to all from 5 to 15 with
  • Increased participation of women in public and political life. Redress provided to victims of gender discrimination in the work place, marital rape considered as an offence and establishment of a  centre for women victims of domestic violence
  • Programmes put in place to combat the increasing number  of crimes. A strategic plan, a Police Complaint Act, a Legal Aid Act which permits litigants to initiate proceedings regarding police brutality were adopted.
  • Were also adopted the Evidence Act to protect crimes’ witnesses and the Counter Trafficking Act to fight, prevent and punish trafficking.
  • New Criminal Procedure Rules to establish effective procedure  for the active processing  of criminal cases and shortening the length of preventive detention.
  • Death penalty applied only for the most heinous crimes
  • Lack of financial and technical resources.

Interactive discussion
Number of States taking part in the discussion

  • Member States: 16          Inscribed on the list:: 37
  • Observer States: 21

Positive achievements

  • Encouraging steps taken by the government to empower the vulnerable groups
  • Strong commitment in favour of  human rights
  • Efforts to reduce the poverty
  • Promotion and protection of  women rights
  • Education as a priority
  • Creation of a new juvenile rehabilitation facility for male and female
  • Stable democratic political system
  • Possible achievement of the Millennium Development goals by the year 2015.

Issues and questions raised

  • Persistent extreme poverty with significant part of the population living in slums and dire conditions
  • Persistence of violence against women and children
  • No measures to guarantee sex orientation equality
  • Persistent gender based stereotype attitudes about the role of women in the society, and increased instances of prostitution especially within the tourism industry
  • HIV/AIDS infection remains an issue of concern

Recommendations

  • Ratify international treaties to which it is not yet Party
  • Accelerate the ongoing efforts aimed at elaborating a national strategy to fight poverty
  • Adopt policies and legislation to combat discrimination and violence against women and children
  • Put in place  a health care system ensuring universal and non discriminatory access to treatment, care and prevention of HIV/AIDS
  • Review the Civil Code to eliminate the gender based discriminatory provisions
  • Carry out investigations on allegations of police violence and on sexual orientation based violence
  • Abolish the death penalty
  • Reduce the length of detention without trial
  • Address the link between prostitution and tourism industry
  • Set up an independent national human rights institution

Response of the concerned country

  • Poverty is a global problem requiring global response. Intense efforts to combat it and improve living standards
  • Participation of women in public life is being improved
  • Discrimination prohibited by the constitution - The death penalty is within the limit of the constitution. - Promotion of the “working with” and not “working for” concept to ensure certain values at workplace
  • All complaints of abuses, violence and discrimination are investigated.

Adoption of the report by the UPR working group scheduled on
Thursday 27 January, 17:30 – 18:00

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