The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
On November 20, 1989 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. So far, 193 States have ratified the Convention.
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child is a powerful tool for Save the Children Sweden's work for children's rights. Those States which have ratified the UN convention on the Rights of the Child have committed themselves to use all the resources available to live up to it. Save the Children Sweden's role is to influence countries so that they are able to live up to their commitment.
No other human rights convention has ever had such great support around the world as the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Only two States have chosen not to ratify the Convention - USA and Somalia. However, they have signed the Convention, which means that they have expressed their intention to eventually adopt it completely.
What does the Convention on the Rights of the Child say?
The 54 articles of the Convention say that all children have the same rights to have their needs supplied, no matter where they are in the world. As soon as anything is done which in any way touches on children, what is best for the individual child must be considered.
But how do we know what is best for children? That question can only be answered by finding out how children feel and what they are thinking. That's what Save the Children thinks and that is also what it says in the Convention.
Reporting every five years
Every five years, those states, which have ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, have to submit a written report to the UN Committee for children's rights on what they are doing to make a reality of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Later the committee confers with representatives from the state's government and recommends things, which ought to be improved. To date the Swedish government has submitted three reports to the Committee (1992, 1997 and 2002). Save the Children Sweden always writes an alternative report in which we give our view of how the Convention is being followed in Sweden. Read the latest report here: Save the Children's Third Report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the child.