Child rights monitoring
Tracking progress for every child
A more effective system is needed to address the entire range of rights from survival and health to cultural and participation rights
Armenia lacks a holistic way of regular monitoring the situation of children, resulting, inter alia, from absence of an efficient system with appropriate capacity for regular collection of comparable data and insufficient coordination of efforts to analyze the situation. The National Commission of Child Rights Protection was established in 2005 (charter revised in 2012) with the goal to contribute to the development of a state policy on the protection of child rights and interests. However, the consultative status of the Commission, the lack of professional secretarial and expert support, and the Commission being led by one ministry has made the Commission neither functional nor effective. A more effective system is needed to address the entire range of rights from survival and health to cultural and participation rights, as defined by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Even though Armenia maintains a strong tradition of data collection, collation and dissemination through a number of reporting systems, several of which are led by MoLSA (Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs in Armenia), child rights related data is not compiled or accessible in a comprehensible and integrated data system. The new National Child Protection Strategy 2017-2021 was approved in mid-2017 followed by relevant contributions to the draft Law on Child Rights. The Strategy states the need for having a common Child Rights Monitoring(CRM) framework with relevant indicators.
A functional child rights monitoring (CRM) mechanism, which would be directly linked to the Prime Minister’s office would allow for effective coordination of different government agencies and non-state actors in policy and decision making for reducing child poverty and disparities, addressing issues of social inclusion, access to services, and effective targeting of the most vulnerable and marginalized children
Incorporation of child rights based concepts and monitoring of the situation of children into main legislative frameworks.
UNICEF Armenia is engaged in a continuous dialog with relevant Government bodies, including Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs in regards to establishing a child rights monitoring system that will help to improve and harmonize fragmental and overlapping data collection processes within respective agencies and the Statistical Committee of Republic of Armenia. The following objectives are set forward
Development of a functional coordinating mechanism on child rights monitoring to lead and coordinate the effort on harmonization and consolidation of existing monitoring tools.
Strengthening independent monitoring by Human Rights Defender’s Office and other social society organizations and developing partnership with them on child rights monitoring and Child Rights Convention reporting.
Improving and supporting social statistics on child rights across all state bodies to harmonize these, align with international standards through strengthening child rights data collection systems.
UNICEF Armenia also supports regular data collection and analysis on child needs together with Statistical Committee of Republic of Armenia. A database of child-focused SDGs was developed to inform policy-making and decision-making based on available relevant data.
What gets measured, gets managed
Having a CRM system in place will support better outcomes for children as a result of influencing policy making directed to children’s well-being and rights at the national level. It will also strengthen and contribute to put the achievement of nationalized SDGs related to children in perspective. A CRM system will allow harmonization of concepts and systems as well as generation, analysis and use of data on children that will serve evidence based planning, budgeting and policy-making which is inclusive of all children. It would also allow the Government to accelerate and measure progress and report on it, to the Parliament, to the public and to international treaty bodies, such as the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.