The rights of the child to health and a safe environment
The objective of this project was to create a framework that included monitoring and reporting guidelines for reporting on the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, linking children’s rights within the human rights context to environmental and health rights through the harmonisation of various monitoring and reporting systems.
The point of departure for this proposed study is the fact that issues relating to environment and the importance of environmental factors to children’s health are almost invisible in reporting to the United Nations Committee to the Rights of the Child. The thesis is that understanding of and consciousness about environmental issues and about how the environment affects child health has increased. This should be reflected in the reporting, but as there are no requirements for this, the themes seem to be neglected.
Three concurrent studies will provide the input for a process of formulating guidelines for good reporting on the rights of the child to health and a safe environment. The guidelines will be implemented, tested and evaluated in a number of countries representing various environmental settings. The three studies are:
- Analysing government and non-governmental reports to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child for their content on sustainable development
- Developing protocols for combining current monitoring strategies used in reporting on other human rights and environmental protocols, including Agenda 21, the United Nations Framework Convention on Biological Diversity and others; and
- Providing a vision through examining case studies of best practice and programmes in agencies encouraging sustainable development and health promotion, including children’s involvement in these processes.
The synthesis of the three studies could be used to develop guidelines for reporting to the Committee to the Rights of the Child and others on a child’s right to health and to a safe environment.
List of Participants:
Canadian Institute of Child Health (Canada), Programme on International Rights of the Child (UK), Unit for Research and Education on the Convention on the Rights of the Child (Canada), and the Childwatch International Secretariat.
Canadian Institute for Child Health, Canada: cich [at]cich.ca