BookPDF Available

Monitoring State Compliance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child An Analysis of Attributes: An Analysis of Attributes



This open access book presents a discussion on human rights-based attributes for each article pertinent to the substantive rights of children, as defined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). It provides the reader with a unique and clear overview of the scope and core content of the articles, together with an analysis of the latest jurisprudence of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. For each article of the UNCRC, the authors explore the nature and scope of corresponding State obligations, and identify the main features that need to be taken into consideration when assessing a State’s progressive implementation of the UNCRC. This analysis considers which aspects of a given right are most important to track, in order to monitor States' implementation of any given right, and whether there is any resultant change in the lives of children. This approach transforms the narrative of legal international standards concerning a given right into a set of characteristics that ensure no aspect of said right is overlooked. The book develops a clear and comprehensive understanding of the UNCRC that can be used as an introduction to the rights and principles it contains, and to identify directions for future policy and strategy development in compliance with the UNCRC. As such, it offers an invaluable reference guide for researchers and students in the field of childhood and children’s rights studies, as well as a wide range of professionals and organisations concerned with the subject.
Children’s Well-Being: Indicators and Research 25
Monitoring State
Compliance with
the UN Convention
on the Rights of
the Child
Ziba Vaghri
Jean Zermatten
Gerison Lansdown
Roberta Ruggiero Editors
An Analysis of Attributes
Childrens Well-Being: Indicators and Research
Volume 25
Series Editor
Asher Ben-Arieh, Paul Baerwald School of Social Work & Social Welfare, The
Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
Editorial Board Members
J. Lawrence Aber, New York University, New York, USA
Johnathan Bradshaw, University of York, York, UK
Ferran Casas, University of Girona, Girona, Spain
Ick-Joong Chung, Duksung Womens University, Seoul, Korea (Republic of)
Howard Dubowitz, University of Maryland, Baltimore, USA
Ivar Frønes, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
Frank Furstenberg, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA
Robbie Gilligan, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Robert M. George, University of Chicago, Chicago, USA
Ian Gough, University of Bath, Bath, UK
An-Magritt Jensen, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim,
Sheila B. Kamerman, Columbia University, New York, USA
Jill. E Korbin, Case Western Reserve University, Cleaveland, USA
Dagmar Kutsar, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia
Kenneth C. Land, Duke University, Durham, USA
Bong Joo Lee, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea (Republic of)
Jan Mason, University of Western Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Kristin A. Moore, Child Trends, Maryland, USA
Bernhard Nauck, Chemnitz University of Technology, Chemnitz, Germany
Usha S. Nayar, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India
Shelley Phipps, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada
Jackie Sanders, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand
Giovanni Sgritta, University of Rome, Rome, Italy
Thomas S. Weisner, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
Helmut Wintersberger, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
This series focuses on the subject of measurements and indicators of childrens well
being and their usage, within multiple domains and in diverse cultures. More
specically, the series seeks to present measures and data resources, analysis of
data, exploration of theoretical issues, and information about the status of children,
as well as the implementation of this information in policy and practice. By doing so
it aims to explore how child indicators can be used to improve the development and
the well being of children.
With an international perspective the series will provide a unique applied per-
spective, by bringing in a variety of analytical models, varied perspectives, and a
variety of social policy regimes.
Childrens Well-Being: Indicators and Research will be unique and exclusive in
the eld of measures and indicators of childrens lives and will be a source of high
quality, policy impact and rigorous scientic papers.
More information about this series at
Ziba Vaghri Jean Zermatten
Gerison Lansdown Roberta Ruggiero
Monitoring State Compliance
with the UN Convention on
the Rights of the Child
An Analysis of Attributes
Ziba Vaghri
University of New Brunswick
Saint John, Canada
Jean Zermatten
Centre for Childrens Rights Studies
University of Geneva
Geneva, Switzerland
Gerison Lansdown
Carleton University
Ottawa, Canada
Roberta Ruggiero
Centre for Childrens Rights Studies
University of Geneva
Geneva, Switzerland
ISSN 1879-5196 ISSN 1879-520X (electronic)
Childrens Well-Being: Indicators and Research
ISBN 978-3-030-84646-6 ISBN 978-3-030-84647-3 (eBook)
©The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2022. This book is an open access publication.
Open Access This book is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
License (, which permits use, sharing, adaptation,
distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the
original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license and indicate if changes
were made.
The images or other third party material in this book are included in the books Creative Commons license,
unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the books Creative
Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted
use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder.
The use of general descriptive names, registered names, trademarks, service marks, etc. in this publication
does not imply, even in the absence of a specic statement, that such names are exempt from the relevant
protective laws and regulations and therefore free for general use.
The publisher, the authors, and the editors are safe to assume that the advice and information in this book
are believed to be true and accurate at the date of publication. Neither the publisher nor the authors or the
editors give a warranty, expressed or implied, with respect to the material contained herein or for any
errors or omissions that may have been made. The publisher remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional
claims in published maps and institutional afliations.
This Springer imprint is published by the registered company Springer Nature Switzerland AG.
The registered company address is: Gewerbestrasse 11, 6330 Cham, Switzerland
This book is part of a long-standing period of the work of an international team of
experts that has been encouraged and supported by the United Nations Committee of
the Rights of the Child and it successive chairpersons since its inception. This period
has commenced with the Indicators of General Comment 7 (also known as the Early
Childhood Rights Indicators) and resulted in the development of the GlobalChild
Platform, a comprehensive child rights monitoring platform. During our tenure as
the chairs of the UN CRC Committee, we have worked with this team and supported
and guided their work.
As the past and present Chairs of the CRC, we have borne witness to the fact
thatin spite of the progress in many areasthere is still insufcient understanding
about what the rights of children entail and how to interpret and implement them.
Thirty years after the adoption of the CRC by the UN General Assembly, childrens
rights continue to be violated routinely and repeatedly in countries throughout the
world. There is an urgent and pressing need for tools that can facilitate a better
understanding of legislative and policy development in support of different rights of
children and the implementation and monitoring of these structures vis-à-vis the
child outcomes. This publication has been produced to contribute to better under-
standing in that process.
Additionally, by identifying the key constituent attributes of each article and
providing a succinct overview of the relevant jurisprudence, this book will contrib-
ute to the Committees scrutiny of States Parties and provide a framework for the
implementation and monitoring of those rights at the national level. As a result, we
believe that the information presented in this book will benet children and all
stakeholders of childrens rights, in all 196 countries that are States Parties to the
Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Chairpersons of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (2006-2021)
Egbert Doek 20012007
Yanghee Lee 20072011
Kristen Sandberg, 20132015
Benyam Dawit Mezmur, 20152017
Renate Winter, 20172019
Luis Ernesto Pedernera Reyna 2019-2021
vi Foreword
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Childthe most widely ratied
human rights treaty in the worldentered into force in 1990. This was a major
milestone, but only the beginning of the long journey toward greater respect for the
rights of children and young people. Three decades of reporting from the States
Parties to the Committee on the Rights of the Child have revealed many gaps
between the promise of the convention and the reality on the ground for children.
As with other human rights treaties, the full realization of childrens rights under the
convention remains a challenge.
This book is an article-by-article analysis of almost all substantive, organiza-
tional, and procedural provisions of the Convention. These analyses have identied
the main attributes to be considered when measuring a States progressive imple-
mentation of the convention. As a global advocate for childrens right to freedom
from violence, this will be a valuable resource for my mandate, as it will be for other
child rights advocates. Providing clarity on what child rights obligations mean in
practice is an essential part of effective advocacy with States Parties.
I acknowledge the signicant contribution of many child rights experts and advo-
cates to creating this book. While it is a stand-alone publication, it will also serve as an
important compendium and reference tool for people working with the GlobalChild
platformthe rst comprehensive child rights monitoring platform to collect data and
track change in securing childrens rights using the human rights-based approach to
indicators. I believe both the platform and this textbook will contribute to a better
interpretation as well as enforcement of all rights under the convention, including
childrens rights to protection from violence, neglect, exploitation, and abuse.
Najat Maalla M'jid
Special Representative of UN Secretary-General on Violence against Children
1 Introduction .......................................... 1
Gerison Lansdown, Roberta Ruggiero, Ziba Vaghri,
and Jean Zermatten
Part I General Principles
2 Article 2: The Right to Non-discrimination ................... 11
Gerison Lansdown
3 Article 3: The Best Interest of the Child ..................... 21
Roberta Ruggiero
4 Article 6: The Rights to Life, Survival, and Development ........ 31
Ziba Vaghri
5 Article 12: The Right to Be Heard .......................... 41
Gerison Lansdown
Part II Civil and Political Rights
6 Article 7: The Right to a Name, Nationality, and to Know
and Be Cared for by Parents .............................. 51
Adem Arkadas-Thibert and Gerison Lansdown
7 Article 8: The Right to Preservation of Identity ................ 59
Adem Arkadas-Thibert
8 Article 13: The Right to Freedom of Expression ............... 65
Gerison Lansdown and Ziba Vaghri
9 Article 14: The Right to Freedom of Thought, Conscience,
and Religion .......................................... 75
Roberta Ruggiero
10 Article 15: The Right to Freedom of Association and Assembly ... 85
Gerison Lansdown
11 Article 16: The Right to Protection of Privacy ................. 93
Christian Whalen
12 Article 17: The Right to Access to Diverse Sources
of Information ......................................... 103
Gerison Lansdown
Part III Family Environment and Alternative Care Rights
13 Article 5: The Right to Parental Guidance Consistent with the
Evolving Capacity of the Child ............................ 117
Gerison Lansdown
14 Article 9: The Right Not to Be Separated from Parents .......... 125
Christian Whalen
15 Article 10: The Right to Family Reunication ................. 135
Christian Whalen
16 Article 11: The Right to Protection from Illicit Transfer
and Non-return of Children Abroad ........................ 145
Ziba Vaghri and Gavin Kotze
17 Article 18: Rights Concerning Parental Responsibility .......... 153
Roberta Ruggiero
18 Article 20: Rights Concerning Children Deprived of Their
Family Environment .................................... 163
Adem Arkadas-Thibert and Gerison Lansdown
19 Chapter 7: Article 21Adoption .......................... 171
Gerison Lansdown
20 Article 25: The Right to Periodic Review of Treatment
and All Other Circumstances of Placement ................... 183
Gerison Lansdown and Ziba Vaghri
Part IV Disability, Health, and Welfare Rights
21 Article 23: The Rights of Children with Disabilities ............. 193
Gerison Lansdown
22 Article 24: The Right to Health ............................ 205
Christian Whalen
x Contents