Minister draws attention to 2016 UNCRC Concluding Observations

Date: 18th October 2016
Category: General principles

The Minister for Childcare and Early Years, Mark McDonald MSP, has highlighted the 2016 UNCRC Concluding Observations in an open letter.

The letter, written to Scottish Ministers and Scottish Parliament Committees, draws attention to the 2016 Concluding Observations from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.

In his letter, the Minister also highlights the related UNCRC duties enshrined in Part 1 of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014, noting that the UNCRC 'requires national and local governments, as public authorities and human rights duty bearers, to respect, protect and fulfil children's rights'.

The Minister's letter is clear that officials across Scottish Government portfolios are looking in detail at the UN's Concluding Observations and examining how government can most effectively respond. He outlines a commitment to hold an event for wider stakeholders around the end of the year to help inform next steps and priorities in taking forward specific actions.

In advance of the 2018 report to the Scottish Parliament under the provisions of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act, the Minister has highlighted a number of important steps that all Scottish Ministers should take to champion the interests of children. These include:

  • Encouraging officials across all portfolios to fully explore the ways in which Scottish Government policies and actions can promote and advance the rights of all children and young people;
  • Ensuring the preparation of Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessments (CRWIAs) for relevant new policies or legislation impacting, either directly or indirectly, on the lives of children and young people.

Together welcomes the Minister's letter and we look forward to working with Ministers, Officials and our broad membership to help take this work forward.