|Countries in the world agreed to protect the rights of children.
These rights are written in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Some countries agreed on a rule.
This rule says that children can complain their country does not protect their rights.
10 countries already agreed on this rule.
Inclusion Europe is taking part in a campaign to tell all the countries to accept this rule.
Inclusion Europe joined the International Coalition for Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (OPCRC) on a Communications Procedure (also called OP3 CRC). The OP3 CRC is a United Nations (UN) international treaty which allows children to ask for justice at the international level by introducing a special communication procedure for this purpose. The Optional Protocol was adopted on the 19th of December 2011 but the communications procedure only becomes available to children once their States ratify it in their national parliaments.
The OP3 CRC has entered into force on Monday, April 14, three months following its mandatory ratification by 10 countries. The 10th country to ratify the Protocol was Costa Rica, on the 14th of January 2014. Kirsten Sandberg, Chairperson of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, called the day of the Protocol’s enforcement “the beginning of a new era for children’s rights. Children are now further empowered as this Optional Protocol recognises their capacity to exercise and claim their own rights.”
Ms. Sanberg also added that she hopes the OP3 CRC will allow children to have a stronger voice and get access to justice and cared to congratulate the 10 states which have already ratified the Protocol, thus making it enforceable: ‘We hope that this new treaty will give voice to children’s testimonies and help them to obtain the necessary remedy and reparation. We applaud those States which, by ratifying this Protocol, have confirmed their determination to improve children’s access to justice.’
By joining the International Coalition, Inclusion Europe together with other child rights organisations around the globe, are striving to make the United Nations procedure a reality for children everywhere. The OP3 CRC introduced the international mechanism allowing a child or his representative to submit a complaint on the violations of his rights. These complaints will be brought before the Committee on the Rights of the Child once the national remedies to resolve the case are exhausted. Consequently, the Committee will examine the case and decide on the legitimacy of the claim. Following the decision, the Committee has the power to demand the State to take action and solve the situation.
Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Violence against Children, Ms. Marta Santos Pais, believes that the OP3 CRC is a ground-breaking moment in the worldwide battle for children’s rights. “With the establishment of a communications procedure, the Optional Protocol places the rights and aspirations of children at the centre of the human rights agenda and makes a landmark contribution to this year’s commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child”, said Ms. Santos Pais.
At the moment of this article’s publication, only ten countries had already ratified the OP3 CRC, these being Thailand, Gabon, Germany, Bolivia, Albania, Spain, Portugal, Montenegro, Slovakia and Croatia. Thirty-eight other countries expressed their intention to ratify, but have not done so thus far, these are: Andorra, Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Benin, Brazil, Cape Verde, Chile, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Cyprus, Ecuador, El Salvador, Finland, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritius, Morocco, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Romania, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey and Uruguay.
For more information about the OP3 CRC, please read the following article published by Include Europe.
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