Advocacy, Public Policy and Partnerships

Advocacy, Public Policy and Partnerships

 

20th Anniversary: Convention on the Rights of the Child

Children's rights are human rights. Children's rights are not special rights, but rather the fundamental rights inherent to the human dignity of all people.

 

Twenty years ago, world leaders decided that children need a special convention acknowledging the full range of their rights, one which obligates governments, caregivers and others to respect, promote and fulfill the rights of each and every child.

That unique document, the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) is the first international instrument to incorporate the full range of human rights—civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights. It is the world’s most widely ratified human rights treaty. 

The Convention sets out children’s rights in 54 articles and two Optional Protocols. It spells out the basic human rights that children everywhere have: the right to survival; to develop to the fullest; to protection from harmful influences, abuse and exploitation; and to participate fully in family, cultural and social life.

Children's rights are human rights. Children's rights are not special rights, but rather the fundamental rights inherent to the human dignity of all people.

The four core principles of the Convention are non-discrimination; devotion to the best interests of the child; the right to life, survival and development; and respect for the views of the child. Every right spelled out in the Convention is inherent to the human dignity and harmonious development of every child. The Convention protects children's rights by setting standards in health care; education; and legal, civil and social services.

By agreeing to undertake the obligations of the Convention (by ratifying or acceding to it), national governments have committed themselves to protecting and ensuring children's rights and they have agreed to hold themselves accountable for this commitment before the international community. States parties to the Convention are obliged to develop and undertake all actions and policies in the light of the best interests of the child.

Children's rights can no longer be perceived as an option, as a question of favour or kindness to children or as an expression of charity. They generate obligations and responsibilities that must be honoured and respected. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Convention on the Rights of the Child

Click on pdf to read the full text of the CRC


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