About the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC)
The U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child is the most ratified of all the United Nations Human Rights treaties. The treaty affirms and describes the fundamental human rights of all children (all human beings below the age of 18), and the governments that have ratified it have legally agreed to fulfill its provisions. The CRC forms the most comprehensive and well-established international standard for children's rights and provides the framework for the actions of UNICEF, the UN children's agency.
Children's rights are also protected under the other UN human rights instruments, which include the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, International Labour Organization Conventions and numerous other documents.
The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child is the body that monitors how well States are meeting their obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child. When a country ratifies the Convention, it assumes a legal obligation to implement the rights recognized in the treaty. But signing up is only the first step, because recognition of rights on paper is not sufficient to guarantee that they will be enjoyed in practice. So the country incurs an additional obligation to submit regular reports to the Committee on how the rights are being implemented. This system of human rights monitoring is common to all UN human rights treaties.
193 States parties that have ratified the Convention as of November, 2007. Canada signed the Convention on May 28th, 1990 and ratified the Convention on December 13th, 1991.
To meet their reporting obligation, States must report initially two years after joining and then every five years. In addition to the government report, the Committee receives information on a country's human rights situation from other sources, including non-governmental organizations, UN agencies, other intergovernmental organizations, academic institutions and the press. In the light of all the information available, the Committee examines the report together with government representatives. Based on this dialogue, the Committee publishes its concerns and recommendations, referred to as concluding observations.
The Committee also publishes its interpretation of the content of human rights provisions, known as General Comments, and General Recommendations on thematic issues or its methods of work. It also holds public discussions, or Days of General Discussion, on particular issues such as "Violence against children".
Computer printable copy of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child
Computer printer prepared version in PDF format
The U.N. Declaration of the Rights of the Child (1959)
The U.N. Declaration of the Rights of the Child (1959) is the predecessor of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989) Read More ..
Canada's Declarations and Reservations about the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child
Countries have made declarations or reservations about certain parts of the Convention. Read More ..
A World Fit for Children
A World Fit for Children is the plan of action and declaration that was adopted at the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Children. It outlines an international series of goals, strategies and actions for children including under the areas of promoting healthy lives; providing quality education; protection from abuse, exploitation and violence; and combating HIV/AIDS.
Canada's Reports to the United Nation's Committee on the Rights of the Child
The periodic report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child by the governments of Canada and NGOs are on the left menus in grey.
Canada's National Plan of Action: A Canada Fit for Children (2004)
U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child - Canada denies Birthright
From the Adoption Council of Canada CANADA DENIES CHILDREN'S BIRTHRIGHT: U.N. REPORT
Senator Landon Pearson's "National Plan of Action: A Canada Fit for Children" Seriously Flawed
Exclusive to the Canadian Children's Rights Council, by Ron Murdock, Canadian citizen living in The Netherlands, September 27th, 2004 Read More ..
CHILDREN'S RIGHTS IN CANADA: A REVIEW OF PROVINCIAL POLICIES - 1997
By Richard Volpe, Ph.D., Professor and Director
The Dr. R.G.N. Laidlaw Research Centre
Institute of Child Study
OISE/University of Toronto Read More ..