Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


UNICEF NZ Calls for Greater Recognition of Children’s Rights

Tuesday 20th December, 2012

UNICEF NZ Calls for Greater Government Recognition of Children’s Rights

As the world celebrates today 23 years since the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCROC), UNICEF NZ (UN Children’s Fund) is calling for greater government recognition of the importance of children’s physical, emotional and social well-being. UNICEF NZ and other groups are increasingly concerned about the gap between children who are doing well and the 270,000 children getting left behind because of poverty.

In a statement issued today to mark the agreement reached in Geneva on 20th November 1989 to adopt the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCROC) Dennis McKinlay, Executive Director of UNICEF NZ, commented that most children in New Zealand are doing well, but he remains very concerned about the large number of children living in poverty, a view supported by many reports and submissions that have gone to our government over the last five years.

Dennis McKinlay said, “In New Zealand children are high on the national agenda right now and that’s a good thing, but we need to do more. Children’s best interests should be at the heart of all legislation, policy and operations in both central and local government. Every decision made about how we progress as a nation impacts our children, but because they don’t vote, they are not a priority for political attention.

“Rights are not negotiable – a child’s right to education, optimal health, adequate nourishment, to play, be valued and well cared for in a warm home, ideally with a supportive family, are binding on governments.

“Children’s rights are not just a ‘nice to have,’ said Dennis McKinlay, “they are the foundation for a healthy, well-educated and productive society.

“The 270,000 children at risk of a poor start in life need the support of all parties in Parliament to realise their rights through a sustained plan to reduce child poverty.

“We mark today as an important day, and urge people in New Zealand to remember children, their rights, needs and the urgency for government action and leadership to keep our promise to children that each and every one of them has the best opportunity to thrive, belong and achieve.”

Dennis McKinlay noted that there is a very real risk that many children will grow to adulthood without the essential foundations for good health, education and constructive participation in society. It is well evidenced that circumstances of childhood, and particularly the very early years, lays down the blueprint for achievements as an adult. He looks forward to reports from the Office of the Children’s Commissioner and the Ministerial Committee on Poverty presenting strong cases for making an adequate standard of living for all children a priority for investment and government responding with real commitment to tackle poverty.

The UNCROC is an agreement signed by almost every country around the world making it the most universally supported human rights treaty in history. It speaks to the importance of children as active citizens now and inheritors of the world that adults shape for them. It defines a set of rights that all countries are obliged to recognise and implement in the best interests of children.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Gaza And Burning The Israeli Flag

One of the selling points in New Zealand’s campaign for a temporary seat on the Security Council is that we have a pluckily independent voice to offer on international conflicts.

This image is not entirely self-delusional. When we did occupy a temporary UN Security Council seat in the 1990s, New Zealand was forthright about the need for the international community to actively respond to the Rwanda genocide. On April 14, 1994, New Zealand, Nigeria and the Czech Republic were the only nations to call for a forceful UN intervention to halt the killings. It was a proud moment in the diplomatic record of the Bolger government.

What then, is the current National government doing with respect to the slaughter in Gaza? More>>

 

Parliament Today:

TAIC Report: Urgent Recommendations After Melling Rail Accident

The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has made four urgent recommendations to KiwiRail following the accident two months ago (27 May) when a Matangi passenger train collided with a stop block at Melling Station, Lower Hutt. More>>

ALSO:

Red Tape: Local Regulations Go Under Microscope

The Government says it is accepting nearly all of the recommendations the Productivity Commission has made on ways to improve local regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Spending Questions: Claudette Hauiti To Step Aside At Election

National Party President Peter Goodfellow confirms that he has received notification from List MP Claudette Hauiti that she plans to step aside at the 20 September election. More>>

ALSO:

EPA: Board Of Inquiry Rejects Basin Flyover By Majority Of 3 To 1

The independent Board of Inquiry delegated to decide on the Basin Bridge Proposal has, by a majority decision (3 to 1), cancelled the Transport Agency’s Notice of Requirement and declined its resource consent applications for the construction, operation and maintenance of a flyover on State Highway 1 in Wellington City... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Non-Apology To Tania Billingsley

The refusal by Prime Minister John Key to issue a personal apology to Tania Billingsley has been accompanied by an array of excuses... Yesterday though, Key’s choice of words indicated that an apology was the last thing on his mind. More>>

ALSO:

Conventions: Winston Peters On The Nation

Winston Peters opens door to standing in East Coast Bays electorate, says it's an "exciting point" and he's thinking about it. "I’ve had a whole lot of people writing to me and calling up and saying ‘why don’t you have a go in East Coast Bays’." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news