Together submits evidence to inquiry on UK compliance with UNCRC

Date: 11th March 2015
Category: Scotland-specific monitoring and reporting

Together has highlighted the impact of reserved powers on children's rights in Scotland, as part of the UK Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights inquiry.

The UK Joint Committee on Human Rights is running a short Inquiry into UK compliance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and has now held three evidence sessions. The Inquiry takes place against the backdrop of the forthcoming review of UK compliance with the UNCRC by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, which is set to take place in 2016.

Together wrote a letter to the Joint Committee to raise the importance of considering the impact of devolution and its complexities. In response, Dr. Hywel Francis MP, Chair of the Joint Committee, wrote to Together on 25th February 2015 acknowledging the "important extra dimension that devolution has brought to the protection and promotion of children's rights across the UK." The letter welcomed a written submission from Together to set out particular concerns, for the Joint Committee to consider as part of their UNCRC Inquiry.

In the submission which has now been sent to the Joint Committee, Together welcomes the opportunity to comment and highlights the need for a mechanism to be put in place to ensure that the UK Government's exercise of reserved powers is assessed for its impact on the human rights of children in Scotland and the other devolved nations.

The submission concludes that the Joint Committee consider the following:

  • Incorporation of the UNCRC into law to ensure a clear and robust way of ensuring all UK nations comply with the Convention. It would also provide a lead to the devolved nations to encourage incorporation of the UNCRC in relation to devolved matters.
  • Consideration of a formal mechanism to be put in place at a UK level that ensures Scotland and the devolved nations are routinely and comprehensively involved in international human rights reporting mechanisms.

Download Together's submission to the Joint Committee's UNCRC inquiry here.

Access further information and Together's original letter to the Joint Committee here.