Lucky Child Foundation

Children rights

List of Articles in the Convention on the Rights of the Child
The Convention on the Rights of the Child comprises the following articles

Preamble
Article 1 - Definition of a child
Article 2 - Non-discrimination
Article 3 - Best interests of the child
Article 4 - Implementation of rights
Article 5 - Parental guidance and the child's evolving capacities
Article 6 - Survival and development
Article 7 - Name and nationality
Article 8 - Preservation of identity
Article 9 - Separation from parents
Article 10 - Family reunification
Article 11 - Illicit transfer and non-return
Article 12 - The child's opinion
Article 13 - Freedom of expression
Article 14 - Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
Article 15 - Freedom of association

Article 16 - Protection of privacy
Article 17 - Access to appropriate information
Article 18 - Parental responsibilities
Article 19 - Protection from abuse and neglect
Article 20 - Protection of children without families
Article 21 - Adoption
Article 22 - Refugee children
Article 23 - Children with a disability
Article 24 - Health and health services
Article 25 - Periodic review of placement
Article 26 - Social security
Article 27 - Standard of living
Article 28 - Education
Article 29 - Aims of education
Article 30 - Children of minorities or indigenous peoples
Article 31 - Leisure, recreation and cultural activities
Article 32 - Child labour
Article 33 - Drug abuse
Article 34 - Sexual exploitation
Article 35 - Sale, trafficking and abduction
Article 36 - Other forms of exploitation
Article 37 - Torture and deprivation of liberty
Article 38 - Armed conflicts
Article 39 - Rehabilitative care
Article 40 - Administration of juvenile justice
Article 41 - Respect for existing standards
Article 42 - Raising public awareness of the Convention
Article 43 and Article 44 - Monitoring and reporting
Article 45 - NGO involvement in monitoring and reporting
Articles 46 - 54 - How the Convention comes into force

 

Summary

The following text is a summary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child

Preamble
The Preamble to the Convention:
  • recalls the basic principles of the United Nations and specific provisions to certain relevant human rights treaties and proclamations;
  • reaffirms the fact that children, because of their vulnerability, need special care and protection; and,
  • places special emphasis on the primary caring and protective responsibility of the family, the need for legal and other protection of the child before and after birth, the importance of respect for the cultural values of the child's community, and the vital role of international co-operation in achieving the realisation of children's rights.

Article 1: Definition of a Child
Children are defined as all persons under eighteen years of age.

Article 2: Non-discrimination
All rights in the Convention apply to all children without exception, and the State has an obligation to protect children from any form of discrimination.
Article 3: Best interests of the child
All actions concerning the child should take full account of his or her best interests. The State is to provide adequate care when parents or others with responsibility fail to do so.

Article 4: Implementation of rights
The State has an obligation to translate the rights of the Convention into reality.

Article 5: Parental guidance and the child's evolving capacities
The State has a duty to respect the rights and responsibilities of parents and the wider family to provide guidance appropriate to the child's evolving capacities.

Article 6: Survival and development
The child has an inherent right to life, and the State has an obligation to ensure to the maximum extent possible the survival and development of the child.

Article 7: Name and nationality
The child has the right to have a name from birth and to be granted a nationality.

Article 8: Preservation of identity
The State has an obligation to protect and, if necessary, re-establish the basic aspects of the child's identity (name, nationality and family relations).

Article 9: Separation from parents
The child has the right to live with his or her parents unless it is deemed incompatible with his or her best interests; the child has the right to maintain contact with both parents if separated from one or both.

Article 10: Family reunification
The State has an obligation to foster and enable family reunification where children and parents live in separate countries; the child whose parents live in a different state has the right to maintain personal relations and direct contact with both parents.

Article 11: Illicit transfer and non-return
The State has an obligation to try to prevent and remedy the illicit transfer and non-return of children abroad by a parent or third party.

Article 12: The child's opinion
The child has the right to express an opinion, and to have that opinion taken into account, in any matter or procedure affecting the child, in accordance with his or her age and maturity.

Article 13: Freedom of expression
The child has the right to obtain and make known information, and to express his or her own views, unless this would violate the rights of others.

Article 14: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
The child has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, subject to appropriate parental guidance and national law.

Article 15: Freedom of association
The child has the right to meet with others and to join or set up associations, unless the fact of doing so would violate the rights of others.

Article 16: Protection of privacy
The child has the right to protection from interference with privacy, family, home and correspondence, and from libel or slander.

Article 17: Access to appropriate information
The State has an obligation to ensure that the child has access to information and material from a diversity of media sources and to take measures to protect children from harmful materials.

Article 18: Parental responsibilities
The State has an obligation to recognise and promote the principle that both parents have common responsibilities for the upbringing and development of the child; the State shall support parents in this task through the provision of appropriate assistance.

Article 19: Protection from abuse and neglect
The State has an obligation to protect children from all forms of maltreatment perpetrated by parents or others responsible for their care, and to undertake preventative and treatment programmes in this regard.

Article 20: Protection of children without families
The State has an obligation to provide special protection for children deprived of their family environment and to ensure that appropriate alternative family care or institutional placement is made available to them, taking into account the child's cultural background.

Article 21: Adoption
In countries where adoption is recognised and/or allowed, it shall only be carried out in the best interests of the child, with all necessary safeguards for the child and under the authorisation of competent authorities.

Article 22: Refugee children
Special protection is to be granted to children who are refugees or seeking refugee status, and the State has an obligation to co-operate with competent organisations providing such protection and assistance.

Article 23: Children with a disability
Children with a physical disability or learning difficulties have the right to special care, education and training designed to help them to achieve the greatest possible self-reliance and to lead a full active life in society.

Article 24: Health and health services
The child has the right to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health possible and to have access to health and medical services. In its provision of health services, the State shall place special emphasis on primary and preventative health care, public health education and the diminution of infant mortality. The State has an obligation to work towards the abolition of harmful practices prejudicial to the health of children. States that ratify the Convention have an obligation to promote international co-operation to advance the realisation of the child's right to health especially in developing countries.

Article 25: Periodic review of placement
The child who has been placed by the State for reasons of care, protection or treatment has the right to have all aspects of that placement evaluated regularly.

Article 26: Social security
The child has the right to benefit from social security.

Article 27: Standard of living
The child has the right to an adequate standard of living; parents have the primary responsibility to provide this, and the State has a duty to assist parents, where necessary, in fulfilling this right. The State has an obligation to take appropriate measures to secure the recovery of maintenance for the child.

Article 28: Education
The child has the right to education; the State has a duty to make primary education compulsory and free to all and to take measures to develop different forms of secondary education and to make this accessible to all children. School discipline should be administered in a manner consistent with the child's human dignity. States that ratify the Convention have an obligation to encourage international co-operation to ensure implementation of the child's right to education, taking particular account of the needs of developing countries.

Article 29: Aims of education
Education should be directed at developing the child's personality and talents; preparing the child for active life as an adult; fostering respect for basic human rights; developing respect for the child's own cultural and national values and those of others; and developing respect for the natural environment.

Article 30: Children of minorities or indigenous peoples
Children of minority communities and indigenous peoples have the right to enjoy their own culture, to practice their own religion and to use their own language.

Article 31: Leisure, recreation and cultural activities
The child has the right to rest and to engage in leisure, play and recreational activities and to participate in cultural and artistic activities.

Article 32: Child labour
The State has an obligation to protect children from engaging in work that constitutes a threat to their health, education or development; to set minimum ages for employment; and to regulate conditions for employment.

Article 33: Drug abuse
The child has a right to protection from illicit use of narcotic and psychotropic drugs and from being involved in their production and distribution.

Article 34: Sexual exploitation
The child has the right to protection from all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse, including prostitution and involvement in pornography

Optional Protocol - An Optional Protocol to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2000 and came into force on the 18 January 2002. It prohibits the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography and requires State Parties to adopt appropriate measures to protect the rights and interests of child victims.

Article 35: Sale, trafficking and abduction
The State has an obligation to make every effort to prevent any form of abduction of children or sale of or traffic in children.

Article 36: Other forms of exploitation
The child has the right to protection from all other forms of exploitation not covered in Articles 32, 33, 34 and 35.

Article 37: Torture and deprivation of liberty
The State has an obligation to ensure that no child is subject to torture, cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment, capital punishment, life imprisonment, and unlawful arrest or deprivation of liberty. The child who is deprived of liberty must be treated with humanity and respect and in a manner that is appropriate to his or her age. Children who are detained should be separated from adults, have the right to contact with family, and access to legal and other assistance.

Article 38: Armed conflicts
The State has an obligation to respect, and to ensure respect for, humanitarian law as it applies to children in situations of armed conflict. States must ensure that no child under the age of fifteen can take direct part in hostilities or be recruited into the armed forces. States must take all feasible measures to ensure protection and care of children who are affected by armed conflict

Optional Protocol - An Optional Protocol to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict was formally adopted by the UN General Assembly on 25 May 2000 and came into force on 12 February 2002. This new Protocol establishes eighteen years as the minimum age for participation in armed conflict, for compulsory recruitment, and for recruitment or use in armed conflict by armed groups.

Article 39: Rehabilitative care
The State has an obligation to take all appropriate measures to promote the physical and psychological recovery and social integration of children who have been victims of any form of neglect, exploitation or abuse, torture or degrading treatment or of armed conflict.

Article 40: Administration of juvenile justice
Children alleged as, accused of, or recognised as having committed an offence have the right to respect for their human rights and in particular to benefit from all aspects of the due process of law, including legal or other assistance in preparing and presenting their defence. States have an obligation to promote alternative procedures and measures so as to ensure that recourse to judicial proceedings and institutional placements can be avoided wherever possible and appropriate.

Article 41: Respect for existing standards
If standards set in the national law of a country which has ratified the Convention, or in other applicable international instruments, are higher than those in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, it is the higher standard which will apply.

Article 42: Raising public awareness of the Convention
The State has an obligation to make the rights contained in the Convention widely known to adults and children alike.

Article 43 and Article 44: Monitoring and reporting
States which ratify the Convention must submit a report on implementation two years after ratification and every five years thereafter. This report is submitted to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child which consists of ten child rights experts elected by State Parties for the purposes of examining progress made by State Parties in implementing the Convention. State Parties are required to make their reports widely available to the general public in their own country.

Article 45: NGO involvement in monitoring and reporting
In order to "foster the effective implementation of the Convention and to encourage international co-operation" the specialised agencies of the UN (such as the ILO, WHO, UNHCR, UNESCO and UNICEF) are involved in the process of considering international reports. Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) may also submit relevant information to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. The Committee may invite the UN specialised agencies and NGOs to advise on the optimal implementation of the Convention.

Articles 46 - 54: How the Convention comes into force
Articles 46-54 define the conditions under which the Convention comes into force; the process for:

Signature and ratification

Entering of reservations and declarations by State Parties

Amending the provisions of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.