This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
A variety of enforcement organizations and mechanisms exist to ensure children's rights and the
successful implementation of the Union. They include the Child Rights Caucus for the United
Nations General Assembly Special Session on Children. It was set up to promote full
implementation and compliance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and to ensure
that child rights were given priority during the UN General Assembly Special Session on
Children and its Preparatory process. The United Nations Human Rights Council was created
"with the hope that it could be more objective, credible and efficient in denouncing human rights
violations worldwide than the highly politicised Commission on Human Rights." The NGO
Group for the Convention on the Rights of the Child is a coalition of international non-
governmental organisations originally formed in 1983 to facilitate the implementation of the
United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Many countries around the world have children's rights ombudspeople or children's
commissioners whose official, governmental duty is to represent the interests of the public by
investigating and addressing complaints reported by individual citizens regarding children's
rights. Children's ombudspeople can also work for a corporation, a newspaper, an NGO, or even
for the general public.
Children are generally afforded the basic rights embodied by the Constitution, as enshrined by
the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. The Equal Protection Clause of
that amendment is to apply to children, born within a marriage or not, but excludes children not
This was reinforced by the landmark US Supreme Court decision of In re Gault. In
this trial 15-year-old Gerald Gault of Arizona was taken into custody by local police after being
accused of making an obscene telephone call. He was detained and committed to the Arizona
State Industrial School until he reached the age of 21 for making an obscene phone call to an
adult neighbor. In an 8–1 decision, the Court ruled that in hearings which could result in
commitment to an institution, people under the age of 18 have the right to notice and counsel, to
question witnesses, and to protection against self-incrimination. The Court found that the
procedures used in Gault's hearing met none of these requirements.
There are other concerns in the United States regarding children's rights. The American
Academy of Adoption Attorneys is concerned with children's rights to a safe, supportive and
stable family structure. Their position on children's rights in adoption cases states that, "children
have a constitutionally based liberty interest in the protection of their established families, rights
which are at least equal to, and we believe outweigh, the rights of others who would claim a
'possessory' interest in these children."
Other issues raised in American children's rights
advocacy include children's rights to inheritance in same-sex marriagesparticular rights for youth
Child labour refers to the employment of children at regular and sustained labour. This
practice is considered exploitative by many international organizations and is illegal in many
countries. Child labour was utilized to varying extents through most of history, but entered
public dispute with the advent of universal schooling, with changes in working conditions during
the industrial revolution, and with the emergence of the concepts of workers' and children's
In many developed countries, it is considered inappropriate or exploitative if a child below a
certain age works (excluding household chores or school-related work).
An employer is
usually not permitted to hire a child below a certain minimum age. This minimum age depends
on the country and the type of work involved. States ratifying the Minimum Age Convention
adopted by the International Labour Organization in 1973, have adopted minimum ages varying
from 14 to 16. Child labor laws in the United States set the minimum age to work in an
establishment without restrictions and without parents' consent at age 16.
The incidence of child labour in the world decreased from 25 to 10 percent between 1960 and
2003, according to the World Bank.
Different Types custody
When a parent has legal custody, that parent has the right to make any decisions regarding the
needs of the child. The parent can make all decisions about education, health care and religion
with consultation of the other parent. In most states, the courts will award joint legal custody so
that both parents can retain their legal rights as far as any decisions made about or for their child.
Physical custody means that the child lives with one parent with only visitation to with the other
parent. If the child spends an equal amount of time with both parents then the state might award
joint physical custody giving parents the right to equal amounts of time with the child.
In this case, the parent can have either sole legal custody or sole physical custody or both. Unless
it is proven that a parent is unfit, there is a trend in the Family Courts to award custody in a
manner that will give the non-custodial parent an opportunity to play a larger role in their child‘s
life. It is very rare in today‘s society for a court to award sole legal custody.
Even when the court orders sole physical custody, the non – custodial parent is able to enjoy
ample visitation. In sole physical custody, both parents share equally in any decisions made
regarding the child‘s needs.
Joint custody means that custody of the child is awarded to both parents. It is the same as sole
custody and can be awarded as joint legal custody or joint physical custody or both.
Custody issues are confusing because the laws and the language used vary from state to state.
The way the final decree reads regarding custody and individual state laws determine the
meaning of the wording in your divorce decree. The Cornell Law School web site is a great start
when researching state laws concerning child custody and other divorce laws by state. I would
encourage any parent going through a divorce to research your state laws pertaining to custody
for a better understanding of what to expect
of Child Custody
Convention on the Rights of the Child
© UNICEF/ HQ05-1244/LeMoyne
Children have rights as human beings and also
need special care and protection.
UNICEF‘s mission is to advocate for the protection of children‘s rights, to help meet their basic
needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential. UNICEF is guided in doing
this by the provisions and principles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Built on varied legal systems and cultural traditions, the Convention is a universally agreed set of
non-negotiable standards and obligations. These basic standards—also called human rights—set
minimum entitlements and freedoms that should be respected by governments. They are founded
on respect for the dignity and worth of each individual, regardless of race, colour, gender,
language, religion, opinions, origins, wealth, birth status or ability and therefore apply to every
human being everywhere. With these rights comes the obligation on both governments and
individuals not to infringe on the parallel rights of others. These standards are both
interdependent and indivisible; we cannot ensure some rights without—or at the expense of—
A legally binding instrument
The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the first legally binding international instrument to
incorporate the full range of human rights—civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights.
In 1989, world leaders decided that children needed a special convention just for them because
people under 18 years old often need special care and protection that adults do not. The leaders
also wanted to make sure that the world recognized that children have human rights too.
The Convention sets out these rights in 54 articles and two Optional Protocols. It spells out the
basic human rights that children everywhere have: the right to survival; to develop to the fullest;
to protection from harmful influences, abuse and exploitation; and to participate fully in family,
cultural and social life. The four core principles of the Convention are non-discrimination;
devotion to the best interests of the child; the right to life, survival and development; and respect
for the views of the child. Every right spelled out in the Convention is inherent to the human
dignity and harmonious development of every child. The Convention protects children's rights by
setting standards in health care; education; and legal, civil and social services.
By agreeing to undertake the obligations of the Convention (by ratifying or acceding to it),
national governments have committed themselves to protecting and ensuring children's rights
and they have agreed to hold themselves accountable for this commitment before the
international community. States parties to the Convention are obliged to develop and undertake
all actions and policies in the light of the best interests of the child.
Children Rights - Guide to Children Rights Law
Children's Rights are the human rights of children with particular attention to the rights of
special protection and care afforded to the young, including their right to association with both
Biological parents, human identity as well as the basic needs for food, universal state-paid
education, health care and criminal laws appropriate for the age and development of the child.
Find Attorneys for Children´s Rights
Children Rights Law - US
ABA - Children's Rights Litigation Committee
The Children's Rights Litigation Committee was created by the Section of Litigation to address
the vast underrepresentation of children in all aspects of the legal system. The Committee
endeavors to increase the number of children's legal projects and pro bono attorneys to
represent children, along with providing training materials and programs in order to assist
advocates in providing the highest quality of representation for children.
Child Rights Information Network (CRIN)
The Child Rights Information Network (CRIN) is a global network that disseminates
information about the Convention on the Rights of the Child and child rights amongst non-
governmental organisations (NGOs), United Nations agencies, inter-governmental organisation
(IGOs), educational institutions, and other child rights experts.
Children's right to HIV and AIDS treatment
The Global Movement for Children (GMC) is the world-wide movement of organisations and
people - including children - uniting efforts to build a world fit for children.
Children's Rights is a national watchdog organization advocating on behalf of abused and
neglected children in the U.S. Since 1995, the organization has used legal action and policy
initiatives to create lasting improvements in child protection, foster care and adoption.
European Children's Network (EURONET)
The European Children's Network - EURONET - is a coalition of networks and organisations
campaigning for the interests and rights of children (defined in the 1989 UN Convention on the
Rights of the Child as all persons under 18 years of age). They share a common concern that
children's rights should be taken into account in all EU legislation, policies and programmes
which have an impact on children's rights.
Human Rights Watch - Children's Rights Division
The Children's Rights Division monitors human rights abuses against children around the world
and works to end them. We investigate all kinds of human rights abuses against children: the
use of children as soldiers; the worst forms of child labor; torture of children by police; police
violence against street children; conditions in correctional institutions and orphanages; corporal
punishment in schools; mistreatment of refugee and migrant children; trafficking of children
for labor and prostitution; discrimination in education because of race, gender, sexual
orientation, or HIV/AIDS; and physical and sexual violence against girls and boys. Children's
physical and intellectual immaturity makes them particularly vulnerable to human rights
Unicef Convention on the Rights of the Child
UNICEF‘s mission is to advocate for the protection of children‘s rights, to help meet their basic
needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential.
United Nations Children's Rights
To highlight the existence of the most egregious violations of international human rights law
and encourage Governments to investigate particular cases, the United Nations Commission on
Human Rights has appointed a Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution
and child pornography.
Children Rights Law - International
Children RIght and the Law
The papers and comments in this volume are drawn from contributions to a Workshop on
'Children, Rights and the Law' organized by the Centre for International and Public Law at the
Australian National University. The purpose of the Workshop was to use the United Nations
Convention on the Rights of the Child as a vehicle for exploring some theoretical and practical
problems with children's rights.
Children‘s Rights: International and National Laws and Practices
Children‘s Rights examines sixteen nations, across five continents: Argentina, Australia,
Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Greece, Iran, Israel, Japan, Lebanon, Mexico,
Nicaragua, Russia, and the United Kingdom (England and Wales). For each nation, the study
focuses on the domestic laws and policies that affect child health and social welfare, education
and special needs, child labor and exploitation, sale and trafficking of children, and juvenile
National Association of Counsel for Children (NACC)
National Association of Counsel for Children (NACC) is a non-profit child advocacy and
professional membership association. The NACC is dedicated to providing high quality legal
representation for children. Our mission is to improve the lives of children and families through
National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse
The National Center for the Prosecution of Child Abuse works to improve the handling of child
abuse cases by providing: Expert training and technical assistance by experienced attorneys; A
clearinghouse on child abuse case law; Research on substantive child abuse information
National Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA)
The mission of the National Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Association, together
with its state and local members, is to support and promote court-appointed volunteer advocacy
for abused and neglected children so that they can thrive in safe, permanent homes.
Recent U.S. Supreme Court Decisions
About Child Abuse
Physical Abuse; Emotional Abuse; Sexual Abuse; Neglect; Shaken Baby Syndrome; Fetal
American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children
The American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children is a national organization whose
mission is to enhance the ability of professionals to respond to children and families affected by
abuse and violence.
Child Aabuse Law
Childabuselaw informs visitors about the handling of child abuse allegations in the legal
system. It reports related developments in law, medicine, and psychology. The site's legal
coverage focuses on Washington State, where its publisher practices law, but includes selected
court decisions and statutes from other states.
Child maltreatment is the general term used to describe all forms of child abuse and neglect.
There is no one commonly accepted definition of "child abuse and neglect." The federal
government defines child abuse and neglect in the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act
as "the physical and mental injury, sexual abuse, negligent treatment, or maltreatment of a child
under the age of 18 by a person who is responsible for the child‘s welfare under circumstances
which indicate that the child‘s health or welfare is harmed or threatened
Child protection and abuse prevention information
Sexual Abuse Laws; Internet Crimes Against Children; Archive of Abuse Laws; Archive of
Court Rulings; Child Law Guides & Publications
End Child Prostitution, Child Pronography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes
Mission: Realisation of the right of all children to live free of child prostitution, child
pornography and child trafficking for sexual purposes
National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect (NDACAN)
National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect (NDACAN) is to facilitate the secondary
analysis of research data relevant to the study of child abuse and neglect. By making data
available to increasing numbers of researchers, NDACAN seeks to provide an accessible and
scientifically productive means for researchers to explore important issues in the child
National Foundation for Abused and Neglected Children (NFANC)
National Foundation for Abused and Neglected Children (NFANC) is dedicated to the
prevention of child abuse and neglect. Other activities include improving the administration of
juvenile justice in America. The organization's principal mission is to enable people to prevent
crime and build safer, more caring communities.
Reducing Children's Exposure to Violence
Strategies and best practices to reduce exposure of children to violence in homes and
communities provided by the California Attorney General's Office
U.S> Department of Justice - Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS)
The mission of the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) is to protect the welfare
of America‘s children and communities by enforcing federal criminal statutes relating to the
exploitation of children and obscenity.
Articles on HG.org Related to Children Rights Law
All Civil Rights Law Related Articles
Articles written by attorneys and experts worldwide discussing legal aspects related to Civil
Rights including: constitutional law, consumer law, discrimination, human rights, native
populations, privacy law, public law and sexual harassment.
Child Protection Policy
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?