New info sheet: UNCRC and children in conflict with the law

Date: 24th June 2024
Category: Special Protection Measures, General measures of implementation
Author: Children and Young People's Centre for Justice


This info sheet by the Children and Young People’s Centre for Justice (CYCJ) provides detailed information about the rights of children in conflict with the law. It emphasises the importance of Articles 40 and 37 of the UNCRC.

The Children (Care and Justice) (Scotland) Act has been granted royal assent. This marks significant changes to the treatment of children under 18 who come into conflict with the law when implemented. The Bill passed the Scottish Parliament on April 25, 2024, and aligns with the UNCRC Act definition of a child as someone up to the age of 18. Alongside this, the Act will also ensure that every child under the age of 18 may, depending on the alleged offence, be referred to the Principal Reporter, removing existing eligibility criteria based on age and legal status. Until the new provisions from the Act come into force, there will continue to be a contradiction concerning the definition of a child.