Alliance Congratulates Geoffrey Shannon on being Shortlisted for International Human Rights Award

Published date: 
29 Nov 2010

By Jillian van Turnhout, Chief Executive

“The Children’s Rights Alliance warmly congratulates Geoffrey Shannon, solicitor and child law expert, on being shortlisted by the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE) for their Human Rights Award 2010 for his contribution as a lawyer in the fight for human rights for children.  This is the first time that an Irish lawyer has made this prestigious shortlist; and indeed Mr. Shannon made it to the final shortlist of two nominees.  The CCBE comprises one million lawyers from all across Europe.

Geoffrey Shannon is well known to Irish audiences as a child lawyer and for his outstanding work on children’s rights; it is now fitting that his work has been recognised by his peers internationally.  The Alliance hopes that this award will build support for the strengthening of children’s rights in Ireland and will encourage Geoffrey to continue his excellent work.

Geoffrey Shannon is a most worthy recipient of this international recognition.  His commitment to children’s rights is second to none.  Geoffrey is a prolific author, his latest edition of his Child Law book runs to over twelve hundred pages.  In addition, Geoffrey wears many hats, some will know him as the Special Rapporteur on Child Protection, others for his work on adoption and many will know him as a commentator in the media.  Across all these issues, his expertise is matched by a skill to express complex legal issues in everyday language and to keep the focus on the child, regardless of the politics of the day. 

Less well known, however, is that over the years, despite a growing personal work load, Geoffrey has dedicated a huge amount much of his time and talent to work, on a pro bono basis, with non-governmental organisations.  The work of the Alliance over the past decade, in particular in relation to the constitutional amendment on children, has been greatly enriched by Geoffrey’s input and expertise.  I am absolutely delighted that Geoffrey’s contribution as a leading champion for children’s rights in Ireland has been given recognition on an international stage.”

Jillian van Turnhout
Chief Executive

Róisín Fitzgerald – Communications Officer - Children’s Rights Alliance – 087 7702845

Notes to Editor:
The Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE) represents around 1 million lawyers from the European Union and European Economic Area through their member Bars and Law Societies.  The CCBE Human Rights Award was created in 2007 in order to highlight the work of a lawyer or lawyers’ organisation that brings honour to the legal profession by demonstrating outstanding commitment and sacrifice in upholding fundamental values.  The 2010 Human Rights Award was granted to Mexican lawyers David Peña Rodríguez and Karla Micheel Salas Ramírez, members of the National Association of Democratic Lawyers (ANAD).  Both lawyers represented the families of the victims of the uninvestigated assassinations of women in the Campo Algodonero case, also known as Ciudad Juárez femicides. For more information log onto to

Geoffrey Shannon was also shortlisted over the weekend for The Irish Association of Law Teachers (IALT) prize awarded to a member who has published a book that is deemed to have made an outstanding contribution to the understanding of law. 

The Children’s Rights Alliance is a coalition of over 90 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) working to secure the rights and needs of children in Ireland, by campaigning for the full implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.  It aims to improve the lives of all children under 18, through securing the necessary changes in Ireland’s laws, policies and services.

Children's Rights Alliance