United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) is an international human rights treaty that grants all children and young people (aged 17 and under) a comprehensive set of rights. The UK signed the Convention on 19 April 1990, ratified it on 16 December 1991 and it came into force in the UK on 15 January 1992. When a country ratifies the Convention it agrees to do everything it can to implement it.
The Convention gives children and young people over 40 substantive rights. These include the right to:
- special protection measures and assistance
- access to services such as education and health care
- develop their personalities, abilities and talents to the fullest potential
- grow up in an environment of happiness, love and understanding
- be informed about and participate in achieving their rights in an accessible and active manner.
All of the rights in the Convention apply to all children and young people without discrimination.
This area of the website explains the obligations of states that ratify the Convention, including reporting to the international treaty monitoring body, the Committee on the Rights of the Child.
Click for more on the following topics:
- background to the convention
- the articles
- reporting process
- UK Government's periodic report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.
Download the contents of this page: as a Word Document
Last updated on 16/04/2009