About the Convention
One of Children in Wales’ aims is to ensure that the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child becomes a reality in Wales. The Convention (UNCRC) was drawn up by member states of the UN in November 1989 and ratified by the UK in December 1991. It contains 54 articles, 41 about rights of children and 13 about its implementation, and is intended to ensure that universal rights of children are upheld throughout the world. In ratifying the treaty the UK Government entered reservations to the Convention, which remain in force today. These include reservations to the articles on juvenile justice (Article 37) and asylum and immigration (Article 22). The UK Government lifted the reservation on asylum and immigration in 2008. The Convention came into force in the UK in January 1992.
The UN Convention in Wales
The Welsh Government formally adopted the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child to provide a foundation of principle for dealings with children in a plenary debate on 14 January 2004.
The Rights of Children and Young Persons (Wales) Measure 2011 requires the Welsh Government to have due regard to the Convention in the exercising of all of its functions from May 2014, and in any new laws or policy made between 2012 and 2014. It also requires the Welsh Government to produce a Children’s Scheme, and to promote know of the UNCRC.
Following the Concluding Observations made of the progress made by the UK in 2008, the Welsh Government launched a 5-year action plan in November 2009, called Getting it Right , which sets out its plans to work on16 priority areas relating to children’s rights in Wales.
You can find out more about the Welsh Government’s work on children’s rights here.
Monitoring the Convention
Governments report on their implementation of the Convention to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child every five years. The UK Government reported in 1994,1999 and 2007. Following the government reports the international treaty monitoring body for the Convention on the Rights of the Child issues its own reports on each Government’s progress. Reports on the UK Government’s progress were issued in 1995 , 2002 and 2008.
In addition to the reports made by governments, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) also compile reports to show how they believe the Convention has been implemented in their country. Children in Wales is represented on the UNCRC Monitoring Group which works together to ensure the effective co-ordination of the monitoring of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child in Wales.