Children and Access to Justice: National Practices, International Challenges

Date: 15th November 2016
Category: Civil Rights and Freedoms, General measures of implementation
Author: Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law

The Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law has released a report on access to justice for children which compares practices from several different national jurisdictions, including Scotland.

The report aims to identify barriers to the availability and effectiveness of access to justice for children, to draw together examples of successful strategies, and to consider how good practice might be transferrable internationally. This is done using an international legal/policy framework, including the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the UN Sustainable Development Agenda.

The report identifies issues with the right of children to be involved in decisions affecting them, as well as emphasising the important role played by redress mechanisms and the variation between jurisdictions regarding the effectiveness of measures aimed at the participation of children in judicial proceedings. Topics covered also include rights education, criminal responsibility, historic inquiries into systematic abuses and children in detention.

Insights from this report may be useful for legal professionals involved in advocacy, law reform, drafting of legislation, legal education and in providing legal assistance and representation relating to children's rights.