About the Convention
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) applies to all children and young people under 18. Its aim is to recognise the rights of children and young people and ensure that they grow up in the spirit of peace, dignity, tolerance, freedom, equality and solidarity.
The UNCRC was drafted in 1989 and is the most widely and rapidly ratified human rights treaty in history. 196 countries have ratified it, including the United Kingdom on 16th December 1991. The USA is the only country which has not yet ratified the Convention.
The fact that a country has ratified the UNCRC does not guarantee that the rights within it shall be respected, protected and fulfilled. This can only be ensured when steps are taken to implement the Convention into domestic law, policy and practice.
What rights do children have under the UNCRC?
Every child in the UK is entitled to over 40 specific rights under the Convention.
These rights can be divided into several categories: