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Call for Written Evidence: Civil Society Submission to the UN’s List of Issues

This year sees the start of the UK’s examination under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). CRAE will be leading this process on behalf of civil society in England and warmly invites its members and other organisations and academics to send in written evidence to inform our submission which will set out suggestions for the List of Issues Prior to Reporting (LOIPR).

The UK has opted into a new Simplified Reporting Process (SRP) where governments prepare focused submissions to UN human rights treaty monitoring processes by being asked to report on fewer and more specific issues. These are set out in a document called the LOIPR. For its forthcoming examination on how well it is respecting children’s rights, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child will ask the UK Government what issues to cover in its State Report. It is therefore crucial that we ensure the UN Committee receives a high-quality submission from civil society, which will help inform the LOIPR and ensure the UK Government is effectively held to account on its child rights obligations. For more information about the SRP download our new briefing.

Our civil society submission is short, (10,000 words) and we can only cover 30 issues so we need you to tell us what you think are the five key children’s rights breaches since the UK was last examined by the UN Committee in 2016. Civil society’s role in the reporting process leading up to the 2016 examination was critical in producing a strong set of final recommendations, many of which the UK Government has gone on to implement. This call for written evidence is your opportunity to influence the content of the report.

DEADLINE: CoP Wednesday 3rd September 2020

Please see the information below for further guidance about what your submission should look like, please make sure you follow it otherwise unfortunately we may be unable to accept your submission.

We are looking for information in the areas of:

  1. General Measures of Implementation and General Principles
  2. Poverty and Homelessness
  3. Safeguarding Children including Violence against Children
  4. Immigration, Asylum and Trafficking
  5. Education, Leisure and Cultural Activities
  6. Health (including Mental Health), Disability
  7. Policing and Criminal Justice

Submissions should outline your five key children’s rights issues – (for example an issue would be: insufficient measures to reduce child trafficking or, increasing child poverty) and include:

  • An assessment of where the Government has made/not made progress under the CRC on your five key children’s rights issues.
  • What has improved or regressed since the last set of Concluding Observations/Recommendations came out in June 2016. E.g. What new laws, policies and guidance have been introduced to meet these? Where and why do you think the Government’s response is lacking?  Wherever possible please refer to new research published as evidence to illustrate the impact this has had on children. See here for our 4 page summary of the Concluding Observations.
  • References to new studies, data or reports that have come out since June 2016 as evidence of how the Government is implementing the CRC to illustrate an issue or used to highlight progress or regression on a Concluding Observation.
  • Specific questions that the UN Committee should include in its LOIPR which the UK Government will have to respond to in its State report. Please note this LOIPR submission will not make recommendations at this stage, just suggested questions. The questions should be precise and elicit information that the Government can not ignore. For example:
    • 1a) What steps has the Government taken to eradicate the use of temporary accommodation for children?
    • 1b) How many children were living in B&Bs in 2019?
    • 1c) How many stayed in a B&B for longer that the 6-week legal limit?
    • 1d) What was the average length of time in cases over 6 weeks?
    • 1e) What was the longest amount of time a child stayed in a B&B?
      Please include no more than five questions per issue.
  • Information on issues of special concern to specific or minority groups of children and young people e.g. children in care, children with SEND or migrant children.
  • Any other concise information you believe will be helpful on trends you are seeing in your work affecting children’s rights (e.g. information on how the criminal justice system is working for children, how disabled children are being affected by welfare cuts or how children in care have their voices listened to).
  • Brief evidence of the effects or likely impact of Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic on this area.
  • Please do not forward publications without clearly indicating for what sections should be used. Try and refer to this evidence in your submission.
  • Please try and limit each issue to 500 words.

DEADLINE: Wednesday 2nd September 2020

Contact:  Please send your evidence marked for the attention of Natalie Williams to info@crae.org.uk by 2nd September2020.

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