As National Children’s Commissioner, I want to see that all Australia’s children grow up loved, safe and respected, are heard, and have every opportunity to realise their full potential. I believe that delivering on the rights of children, as enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), is fundamental to making children’s rights real and Australia the best place in the world to grow up.
This year marks the 30th Anniversary of the CRC—the most complete statement of children’s rights ever produced.
The CRC is also the most widely ratified human rights treaty in history. It covers all aspects of a child’s life, and makes clear that every child has rights, irrespective of their circumstances, and that as a society we must work together to make sure all children can enjoy them.
This report—In Their Own Right: Children’s Rights in Australia— tells the story of how well children’s rights are protected and promoted across Australia. It tells us where we are doing ok, where we should be doing much better, and where we do not yet know enough to make an assessment of our performance.
It covers all the basic rights, domains and preconditions that children need to do well: like having a home and a family, getting a good education, being able to access quality health care, being safe from harm, and having a voice.
It does this in the context of significant data gaps which means that at present there is insufficient disaggregated national data to meet the monitoring requirements set out by the United Nations
Committee on the Rights of the Child (the Committee).
While most Australian children live in safe and healthy environments and do well, there are some groups of children whose rights are not adequately protected, which impacts negatively on their wellbeing and ability to thrive.
This includes Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children with disability, those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex
SOURCE: Australian Human Rights Commission. “Children’s Rights Report 2019 In Their Own Right: Children’s Rights in Australia.” Australian Human Rights Commission, 2019.
The Brotherhood of St Laurence acknowledges and recognises the Traditional Owners of the land upon which we live and work, and we pay our respects to their Elders both past and present.
Produced by the librarians at the Brotherhood of St Laurence in Melbourne, Australia