Welsh Assembly launches children’s rights consultation

Date: 14th August 2019
Category: General measures of implementation

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The Welsh Assembly’s Young People and Education Committee is consulting on the impact of the Rights of Children and Young Persons (Wales) Measure 2011.

The Welsh Measure places duties on Welsh ministers to have “due regard” to the UNCRC and its Optional Protocols, and to promote knowledge and understanding of the UNCRC amongst the public, including children and young people. The Measure also provides that Welsh Ministers must prepare a “Children’s Scheme” setting out what they have done and are planning to do to ensure that “due regard” is given, and publish a report every five years setting out what steps have been taken.

The consultation will consider:

  • the extent to which the Welsh Measure has influenced the Welsh Government’s decision-making
  • how the “due regard” duty is being implemented in practice
  • Whether Child Rights Impact Assessments (CRIAs) are being used as a meaningful tool
  • Whether the Welsh Measure fulfils the “general measure of implementation” of the UNCRC
  • Evidence of whether the Welsh Measure has led to improved outcomes for children and young people.
  • Whether the duties within the Welsh Measure have been embedded effectively across the Welsh Government
  • The extent to which Welsh Government has implemented its duty to promote knowledge and understanding of the UNCRC
  • The effectiveness of the Children’s Rights Scheme and compliance reports.
  • How effectively the Welsh Government responds to the UNCRC Committee’s Concluding Observations.

This comes at a time when the Scottish Government is consulting on incorporating the UNCRC into Scots law. A draft Bill for incorporation has been produced by an independent Advisory Group of experts, convened by Together and the Children and Young People’s Commissioner Scotland. This draft Bill draws upon elements of the Welsh Measure (such as the “due regard” duty and Children’s Scheme) and seeks to strengthen them.