Human rights. People these days often groan when they hear these words.
But, human rights are guarantees – in law – that protect all human beings (that’s you and me… ish).
As children and young people, there are also additional rights to protect us and to ensure we get the best opportunities in life.
These additional rights were developed by the United Nations and are detailed in something called the UNCRC – United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Our governments are responsible for making sure we have education, information, involvement in decision-making, healthcare, a good standard of living, leisure activities, fair treatments in the criminal justice system (the courts, etc), and good things like this!
Children’s Commissioner For Wales | UNCRC – An easy-to-understand, brief intro to UNCRC by the person who stands up for children and young people in Wales and makes sure their rights are reality.
Citizens Advice Bureau | Children’s rights in Wales – Lots of easy-to-understand info about your children’s rights in Wales.
Other links you might find useful
Save the Children | UNCRC – a good, quite detailed intro to the UNCRC.
UNICEF | What is the UNCRC? – a harder but fuller explanation of the UNCRC.
Children’s Commissioner For Wales | UNCRC – A list of Children’s Rights – a very easy-to-understand list of all of your rights.
UNICEF | FACTSHEET: A summary of the rights under the Convention on the Rights of the Child – a longer summary of all of your rights than the link above.
Children’s Rights Wales website – They say, “Discover all the rights for children in the UNCRC and explore the resources, films, games and information.”
Agenda – Agenda is a young person’s guide to making positive relationships matter. Its aim is to tackle issues like gender equality, gender based violence, and sexual harassment in schools.
If you would like more info about your rights, feel your rights are not being met, feel you aren’t being treated right by someone like your teacher or social worker, or would like advice on how to complain about a Minister’s decision regarding your rights, you can contact Meic below. You can also try ChildLine or Samaritans, too.
ChildLine – a free 24-hour counselling helpline (by NSPCC) for children and young people up to their 19th birthday.
Samaritans – free 24-hour helpline for anyone who needs emotional support.
Apps & Games
Our Rights – Wales (the link is to iTunes) – “This app (bilingual) was developed with and for the Welsh Government to help people living in Wales find out more about children and young people’s rights.” Note: it’s free but was last updated May 11 2013, so it may be worth fact-checking its contents.
Did you realise?
You can exercise some of your rights on TheSprout (this very website!):
Right #13 – Children have the right to get and share information. Find info or submit your own stuff!
Right #17 – Children have the right to get information that is important to their health and well-being… Yep, covered (including by young people)…
Right #17 continued – Children have the right to honest information from newspapers and television that they can understand. Hopefully, you’ll find all of our info easy to understand, but if not, let us know. Not only can you write for us and guide our Info section, but you can also direct the site through the youth-led Sprout Editorial Group (think about it: you both write and control the news here!)
Right #12 – When adults are making decisions that affect children, children have the right to say what they think should happen and have their opinions taken into account. That’s why we love sharing groups, events, surveys and consultations with which you can get involved to have your say (see our #YourShout section!).
For more organisations, services or info about the UNCRC, check out our database or contact Meic, the advocacy, advice and information helpline for children and young people in Wales – Freephone: 080880 23456 / Text: 84001, Instant Message.
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