Tuesday 28 May 2013: For immediate release
Irish State must Ratify all Optional Protocols to UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
The Children’s Rights Alliance is today urging the Irish State to urgently sign and ratify the remaining Optional Protocols to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child – only one of three has been ratified to date.
Speaking at the Children’s Rights Alliance AGM in Dublin, Maria Corbett, Acting Chief Executive says: “A key focus of today’s proceedings is to once again urge the State to ratify the second and third Optional Protocols to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The second Optional Protocol relates to the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, and the third Optional Protocol allows children and their advocates to make complaints to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. We are trailing behind our international peers on this and we want to see change as a matter of priority.”
“We are delighted to welcome Veronica Yates, Director of Child Rights International Network (CRIN), a global network for children's rights, to our AGM to deliver a keynote speech on ‘An International Perspective on the Realisation of Children’s Rights’. Veronica will outline the children’s rights tools that are available to hold States to account to achieve positive change for children and young people.”
Veronica Yates, Child Rights International Network (CRIN) says: “I am thrilled to be in Dublin to mark the Children’s Rights Alliance AGM and provide my perspective to an Irish audience on realising children’s rights. I have witnessed first-hand many trailblazing examples internationally of how children’s rights can be achieved. I believe these examples can help anyone who cares about children to think outside the box and create a positive impact on children and young people here in Ireland.”
“Protecting and empowering children by ratifying all three Optional Protocols to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child is a vital step towards creating global respect for children’s rights. Ireland lags way behind other international States in this regard. I am particularly concerned about the Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography. 163 countries around the world have seen fit to ratify this important Protocol yet Ireland lags pitifully behind and is one of only two European Union states who have not ratified it.”
The Children’s Rights Alliance’s Seventeenth Annual General Meeting is on today, Tuesday 28 May 2013, in the European Parliament, Molesworth Street, Dublin 2. The keynote speech starts at 3pm. At its AGM, the Alliance will reflect on the work of the previous year, 2012 being an exciting and historic year given the passing of the Children’s Rights Referendum. The meeting will also consider the next steps towards fully realising children’s rights in Ireland.
Notes to Editor
- Guided by a passion for social and legal change, the Child Rights International Network (CRIN) is building a global network for children's rights. CRIN presses for rights, not charity, and advocates for a genuine systemic shift in how governments and societies view children.
- Veronica Yates has worked for CRIN for just over ten years. She is co-chair of the International NGO Council on violence against children, convenes the NGO Group Working Group on Mainstreaming and sits on the Board of Child Soldiers International, Approach Ltd and the NGO Group for the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
- There are three Optional Protocols to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child:
1. Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict: Ireland signed this Optional Protocol on 7 September 2000 and ratified it on 18 November 2002.
2. Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography: Ireland signed this Optional Protocol on 7 September 2000 but has not yet ratified it.
3. Optional Protocol on a Communications Procedure: Ireland has neither signed nor ratified this Optional Protocol which opened for signature on 28 February 2012.
- Ireland and the Czech Republic are the only two out of 27 European Union Member States who have not yet ratified the Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography.
- The full text of the three Optional Protocols can be found at the United Nations Treaty Collection web site http://treaties.un.org
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