Thursday, January 19, 2012

Doherty welcomes progress on UN Rights of the Child report

Fine Gael Meath East TD, Regina Doherty, has welcomed confirmation from the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald, that Ireland will present a report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child later this year.

“This Government is committed to not only enhancing child protection, but also enshrining the rights of the child in our Constitution. We have set out an ambitious agenda for this area, and as well as improving our own legislative provisions, we are also committed to living up to our international obligations.

“Ireland ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1992; we submitted our second progress report to the UN Committee in 2005/2006, but unfortunately a third report which was due in 2009 was not submitted by the previous Government.

“We must cement our reputation as a country that puts child protection at the heart of our national agenda. Minister Fitzgerald has directed that a substantial progress report, which will cover the period 2006 to 2011 inclusive, should be submitted to the UN Committee later this year. It will outline developments achieved during that period, and plans for 2012-13.

“This report will be prepared in tandem with the wider ongoing work being carried out to improve and enhance our child protection structures. For too long in Ireland, children were not given the legal recognition and protection they deserve. This Government is determined to ensure this situation does not prevail.

“A number of advancements are being made in the area of child protection; work on the Children’s Rights Referendum is progressing and legislation that requires all organisations to comply with the Children’s First Guidelines and to share relevant information in the best interest of children is passing through the Houses of the Oireachtas. I would like to commend Minister Fitzgerald for her work on this area.”

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