The United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child establishes the fundamental rights of children everywhere. The convention is a legally binding instrument that protects the civil, cultural, economic, political, and social rights of children. 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. The Convention was opened for signatures on November 20th 1989 and became effective on September 2nd 1990. The Convention has 140 signatories and 193 Parties.[i]
Goal: To establish a legally binding instrument that universally protects the civil, cultural, economic, political, and social rights of children.
1. States Parties recognize that every child has the inherent right to life.
2. States Parties shall ensure to the maximum extent possible the survival and development of the child.
1. States Parties shall take all appropriate legislative, administrative, social and educational measures to protect the child from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation, including sexual abuse, while in the care of parent(s), legal guardian(s) or any other person who has the care of the child.
1. States Parties recognize the right of the child to be protected from economic exploitation and from performing any work that is likely to be hazardous or to interfere with the child’s education, or to be harmful to the child’s health or physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development
2. States Parties shall take legislative, administrative, social and educational measures to ensure the implementation of the present article. To this end, and having regard to the relevant provisions of other international instruments, States Parties shall in particular:
(a) Provide for a minimum age or minimum ages for admission to employment;
(b) Provide for appropriate regulation of the hours and conditions of employment;
(c) Provide for appropriate penalties or other sanctions to ensure the effective enforcement of the present article.
States Parties shall protect the child against all other forms of exploitation prejudicial to any aspects of the child’s welfare.
[i]UN Secretary General. (1989, November 20). 11 . Convention on the Rights of the Child. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from United Nations Treaty Collection: http://treaties.un.org/Pages/ViewDetails.aspx?mtdsg_no=IV-11&chapter=4&lang=en
[ii]UN Secretary General. (1989, November 20). Convention on the Rights of the Child. Retrieved October 17, 2013, from United Nations Human Rights: http://www.ohchr.org/en/professionalinterest/pages/crc.aspx