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Every state that has ratified the Convention is required to report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child on how it is fulfilling its human rights obligations. The basis for the UN Committee's review is a report submitted by the state party two years after it has ratified the Convention. After that, progress reports are required every five years.
The UK first reported to the UN Committee on 15 March 1994.
After a country ratifies the Convention, it is required to submit an initial report to the UN Committee. The initial report outlines measures the country has taken to implement the Convention.
Approximately every five years thereafter each country must submit a periodic report. The periodic report should enable the UN Committee to make a comprehensive assessment of progress in that state relating to the implementation of the Convention.
The UN Committee is keen to hear from independent human rights bodies. Before it examines a state party (the government), the UN Committee holds a 'pre-sessional' working group where it hears from independent human rights institutions (including children's commissioners and ombudsmen), non-governmental organisations and children and young people.
Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) such as national charities, and international bodies such as UNICEF, are encouraged to submit reports to the UN Committee about the implementation of the Convention in a particular country. The UNCRC is the only international human rights treaty that expressly gives NGOs a role in monitoring its implementation. The UN Committee prefers NGOs to work together in coalitions and to submit coordinated reports.
The UN Committee is keen to hear from children and young people about the implementation of their rights. NGOs have a critical role in supporting children and young people to submit their views and experiences to the UN Committee. Governments too must obtain children's and young people's views about how well their rights are respected.
The UN Committee considers all evidence submitted to it by state parties (governments) and other bodies. It then produces concluding observations on the country it has assessed. These set out the UN Committee's assessment of progress in implementing the Convention in that country and any areas of concern. The sate party (government) is not expected to formally respond to the concluding observations, but should address the issues in its next periodic report to the UN Committee.
|19 April 1990||Signed the Convention|
|16 December 1991||Ratified the Convention|
|15 March 1994||Submitted initial state report|
|24 January 1995||The UN Committee published its UK first concluding observations|
|14 September 1999||Submitted second periodic report|
|19 September 2002||The UN Committee published its second UK concluding observations|
|15 July 2007||Submitted the consolidated third and fourth periodic reports|
|3 October 2008||The UN Committee published third and fourth consolidated concluding observations|
|14 January 2014||Submit the next periodic report|
Visit the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child's website for more information on the convention, the processes involved and for reports from other countries. You can download guidance, called General Comments, from the committee about different aspects of children's human rights.
UNICEF has published an Implementation Handbook for the Convention on the Rights of the Child. The handbook examines each article of the Convention, what it means, what states are required to do, how states can monitor progress, and what the Committee on the Rights of the Child has recommended (generally and to individual countries). It also gives examples of best practice.
British overseas territories are not part of the United Kingdom but come under its sovereignty. These territories include Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, the Falkland Islands, the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, Montserrat, St Helena and its dependencies (Ascension and Tristan da Cunha), the Pitcairn Islands and the Turks and Caicos Islands. They ratified the UNCRC from 1997.
Crown dependencies fall under the sovereignty of the British Crown but have a different constitutional relationship with the UK than overseas territories. The Isle of Man is the only crown dependency to ratify the UNCRC.
The last reports submitted to the committee on the implementation of the Convention by the crown dependencies and overseas territories can be downloaded from this page. Please note that the Falkland Islands submitted their initial report separately from the other overseas territories, but they were examined by the UN Committee at the same time as the UK’s second periodic report. The concluding observations include the Falkland Islands.
The Isle of Man and the overseas territories submitted its latest periodic report jointly with the main UK’s third and fourth consolidated periodic reports. These reports were examined at the same time as the main UK report.
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