‘The Convention on the Rights of the Child and the promotion of human rights’ is a very wide brief and this paper will use it first to note the remarkable influence and impact of the Convention – but more to look at what is needed to increase its impact on the real lives of children. The paper focuses on the Convention’s impact in Europe and does not attempt any sort of global analysis.
Surely one must expect any government which is really committed to the promotion of human rights to see that giving priority to children’s rights is the obvious strategy? How can any country hope to build a culture of human rights unless its children enjoy their human rights, experience what it means to be a holder of human rights, and see adults taking their human rights seriously? If human rights are not built into children’s early development and into government and services and institutions for them, there can be no serious prospect of developing a human rights culture for all our futures.