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New Zealand children: UN Committee "deeply concerned"

New Zealand children: UN Committee "deeply concerned"

UN Committee expresses deep concern about the enduring high prevalence of poverty among children and a range of other issues, and makes recommendations for improvement

Peace Movement Aotearoa

10 October 2016

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child released two sets of Concluding Observations on New Zealand's performance on Saturday, 8 October. The Committee - which monitors state party compliance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child (the Convention), the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict (OPAC, also known as the Optional Protocol on Child Soldiers), and the Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography (OPSC) - considered New Zealand's performance during its 73rd session last month.

Peace Movement Aotearoa has today published an overview of both sets of Concluding Observations, which has three main sections:

1) Concluding Observations: Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict (OPAC) - which includes an overview of the Committee's concerns and recommendations, with some of the specific recommendations on the right to an adequate standard of living and housing, the level of child poverty, the impact of the welfare reforms and benefit sanctions, Maori children, children with disabilities, cultural capability of the care and protection system, and the OPAC highlighted.

The recommendations on cultural capability of the care and protection system are especially useful right now when the government is proposing to remove the legislative principles prioritising placing Maori children in care with whanau, hapu and iwi (part of the recently announced further reforms to child protection and care).

Links to this set of Concluding Observations, and to further information on the government's proposal about Maori children in care, are included in this section.

2. Concluding Observations on the Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography (OPSC) - which includes an explanation of why these Concluding Observations are separate from the Concluding Observations on the Convention and OPAC, an overview of the Committee's concerns and recommendations, and the link to the Concluding Observations.

3. Where you can get more information - which includes links to background information on the Convention, its Optional Protocols, the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the process for considering state parties performance, the Committee's 73rd session, New Zealand and the Convention and the Optional Protocols, NGO and other reports to the Committee, and the interactive dialogue between government representatives and the Committee during the 73rd session.

Peace Movement's overview of the Committee's Concluding Observations is attached, and available online at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/hright.htm and at New Zealand children: UN Committee “deeply concerned”


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