Children Charities’ anger at slow rights progress

A year after a damning report into the UK’s treatment of children
was published by the United Nations, little progress has been made
in key areas, according to research released by the Children’s
Alliance this week.

The alliance, made up of charities including the National
Children’s Bureau and the Children’s Society, says that there is
“huge disappointment” that more has not been done to address
children’s human rights.

In October 2002, the report on the UN Convention of the Rights of
the Child, to which 191 countries have signed up, criticised the
UKgovernment’s record on issues ranging from child poverty to the
accommodation of children in adult prisons.

But 12 months on, some young offenders are still resident in
prisons and no date has yet been set for their removal. The
research is also critical of the government’s failure to ban
smacking and make more progress in the bid to eradicate child

Last month, Althea Efunshile, director of the Children and Young
People’s Unit, admitted that the government’s implementation of the
UN Convention could be improved.

She said: “We are looking at how we can more systematically –
because it is not very systematic at the moment – get a handle on
the implementation of the UN Convention.”

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