Reporting to the United Nations
When UN member states ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child, they must report to the UN initially after two years, then every five years.
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child examines written evidence and meets with Government representatives. Before it meets with Government, it holds private discussions with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and with children and young people.
NGOs are invited by the UN Committee to submit a written report highlighting areas of concern, as well as significant progress in implementing the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
CRAE co-ordinates the NGO England alternative report to the UN Committee.
We have made comprehensive submissions each time the UK has been examined by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child – in 1995, 2002 and 2008.
For the 2008 examination, we supported children and young people in England to carry out a major children's rights investigation and submit their own report to the UN. You can find out more by watching this short film:
CRAE's 2008 submission to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child was endorsed by more than 100 NGOs in England. It made 152 recommendations.
In June 2008, CRAE's national co-ordinator and children and young people from CRAE (aged 9-17 years) gave evidence to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child in Geneva.
The following week, we held a Parliamentary event attended by many NGOs and Parliamentarians. Our guest speaker was Professor Lucy Smith from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.
We went to Geneva in September 2008 to observe Government representatives giving evidence to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child issued its concluding observations on the UK on October 3. CRAE disseminated these widely, together with our submissions to the UN, as part of the 2008 State of Children's Rights report, and lobbied Government to publish a full written response to the Committee's concluding observations.
On 20 November 2009 - the 20th anniversary of the adoption by the UN of the Convention - the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) published a report setting out its "priorities for action" on the concluding observations. You can download it here (DCSF site). At the same time, the DCSF published a short document setting out the "joint commitment" of Ministers across the UK to taking action on some of the Committee on the Rights of the Child's recommendations. You can download it here (DCSF site).
The next examination of the UK by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child will take place in 2014.