The European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) is an international human rights treaty that gives all people – adults, children and young people - a set of rights, such as the right to life and the right to freedom of religion. The ECHR protects the rights of all those who live in the 47 countries that make up the Council of Europe, including the UK.  The UK’s obligations under the ECHR will not change because of Brexit.

Find out more about the ECHR and its benefits for children on the Council of Europe portal.

The Human Rights Act 1998 made the ECHR part of domestic law, which means that children can take cases to courts in England if they think their rights have been breached. If the English courts wrongly reject their claim, they can take a case to the European Court of Human Rights, once they have been through the court system in the UK. 

For more information on the Human Rights Act and its relevance for children, see this section. 

Read the ECHR or our guide to using the ECHR.