Improving the lives of children and young people

Education Vice Convener Cllr Alison Dickie has welcomed a public consultation on incorporating the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into Scottish Law.

The announcement was made as Deputy First Minister John Swinney visited Sciennes Primary School in Edinburgh today (Wednesday 22 May).

The school was chosen as the venue for the launch of the consultation as it is has a gold award for being a UNICEF Rights-Respecting School. 

Cllr Dickie said: “The UNCRC sets out the rights of every single child, irrespective of where they live, the religion they follow or the make-up of their society. This includes the right to be treated fairly and equally, the right to be as healthy as possible, and the right to be heard. 

“I was delighted today to be at Sciennes PS to listen to members of the Children's Parliament confidently present Mr Swinney with their 'Wee Book of Promises' and a copy of their 'What Kind of Edinburgh' magazine, as presented at our Education Committee just yesterday.

“As a Council we’ve been at the forefront of a rights based approach with our What Kind of Edinburgh work. We need to embed children’s rights into everything we do as a society so it can change our culture and ensure we get it right for every child. 

“I’m really pleased the public are being asked for their views and I would urge everyone to take part in the consultation especially our young people.”

During his visit to the school Mr Swinney congratulated pupils on the work they have done to develop and champion children’s rights at a special assembly with Members of the Children’s Parliament. The Sciennes pupils also discussed their Clean Air campaign with Mr Swinney and Lucinda Rivers, Head of UNICEF UK in Scotland.

Notes to editors:

The UNCRC is the most complete statement of children’s rights ever produced.  It sets out the rights of every child and includes rights such as the right be treated fairly and equally, the right to be as healthy as possible, and the right to be heard. 

Children’s rights set out within the UNCRC include the right to:

• Life, survival and development

• Protection from violence, abuse or neglect

• An education that enables children to fulfil their potential

• Be raised by, or have a relationship with, their parents

• Express their opinions and be listened to

A guide for children and young people to the UNCRC is available here.

The consultation runs until 14 August 2019. After this, the Scottish Government intends to deliver legislation in this parliamentary session.


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