Missouri receives “F” grade for meeting child’s rights standards, report finds
No state scored “A” or “B” in probe of child labor, child marriage, corporal punishment policies
While the U.S. has not ratified the treaty, it seeks to have all member states recognize that “the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world.”
The report examines each state’s laws and policies governing corporal punishment in schools, child marriage, child labor and juvenile prison sentencing.
Missouri, along with 15 other states, received an “F” grade. 27 states, including Illinois and Kansas, received a “D” grade. Only 7 states, including Iowa, earned a “C.”
The report also notes that since the initial data set was released in 2022, 11 states showed improvement, but Missouri was not among them.
The Show Me State raised the minimum age for marriage to 16, and included a requirement that the child receive permission from at least one parent or guardian. The treaty sets the minimum age for marriage at 18.
Missouri public schools are still allowed to dole out corporal punishment, leaving the decision of whether to use it to the school districts or charter school governing boards. State law does require that the school receive written permission from a parent before physically punishing a child.
Corporal punishment is fully banned in 3 states, it’s allowed in only the public schools of 25 states, and allowed in all schools in 22 states, including Missouri.
Missouri also allows children as young as 14 to be employed without parental consent, and as young as 16 years old for an agriculture job that’s considered “hazardous.” The treaty places those standards at 16 and 18, respectively.
Juvenile sentences of life without parole are not prohibited in 22 states, including Missouri.
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