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CRC Dainius Puras - Challenges of monitoring and implementation

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CRC Dainius Puras - Challenges of monitoring and implementation

  1. 1. Rights of Children in EU – challenges of monitoring and implementation: view from UN CRC and Lithuania Dainius Puras UN Committee on the Rights of the Child Vilnius university EU FRA Stakeholders Meeting , Vienna , 2 3 02 201 1
  2. 2. Experience from UN CRC and process of transition in the region of C EE <ul><li>Enthusiastic reform movement in the 1990’s towards modern alternatives to institutional care and punitive approaches : focus on civil rights and freedoms, pilot community based services supported by international foundations, concept of institutional care c hallenged as outdated. Ratification of CRC and ambitious goal to join EU </li></ul><ul><li>Stagnation during the next decade (2000-2010): improving conditions in institutional care as a priority. Opportunistic approach and survivalistic attitudes prevail over vision of empowering children as right holders and principles of autonomy/participation and civil rights/freedoms. After EU accession and during economic crisis institutional care and punitive approaches strengthen their positions while development of modern child/youth friendly and f amily support services is under threat </li></ul>
  3. 3. UN CRC: experience from monitoring process <ul><li>Institutional care overused throughout all Europe (Browne K., 2006), still much more pronounced this phenomenon is in CEE countries , including newer EU Member States </li></ul><ul><li>Children from 0 to 3 in institutional care. Disabilities and perceived disabilities. Institutional care, starting from “infant homes” , sadly contributes to growth of numbers of children and adults with disabilities and in institutional care </li></ul><ul><li>Weak alternatives to institutional care, especially in new er Member states. Weak concept of investing in more competent parenting, instead – tradition of moralizing “bad parents” and “protection” of children in institutional care </li></ul><ul><li>EU membership factor – more visible before accession, not so effective after accession. Alarming information about EU structural funds supporting institutional care . </li></ul><ul><li>Incentives for prioritizing institutional care: lack of holistic approach to RoC </li></ul><ul><li>Vicious cycles of stigma, social exclusion, intolerance and reliance on institutional care reinforcing each other : urgent need to recognize the systemic failure and to seriously address it . How can data collection and monitoring activities contribute? Who, how and what should measure and monitor? </li></ul>
  4. 4. Challenges of ( de ) institutionalisation <ul><li>Economic / social rights vs. civil rights and freedoms – hidden hierarchy of rights as justification of institutional care and other regressive tendencies </li></ul><ul><li>Right to life and survival or right to life, survival and development? (CRC art.6) . Shortcomings of the UN MDG concept </li></ul><ul><li>Rights of persons in institutions vs. right to live in family and community ( least restricted ) environment </li></ul><ul><li>Legislation and everyday practice: when exceptions (violating human rights) turn into unwritten rules </li></ul><ul><li>Risky compromises throughout Europe: Concepts of “good” institution and “balanced” spectrum of services including institutional care. Justification of institutional care as “real-politik” </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of culture of evaluation of outcomes and inde pendent monitoring. </li></ul><ul><li>To address all these challenges, EU membership and EU enlargement needs to be effectively used as a unique opportunity for change of paradigm in culture of human services in all Member states </li></ul><ul><li>Trends in capacities of duty-bearers (to respect, protect and fulfill rights) and capacities of rights holders to claim their rights) need to be monitored. This could be a guiding principle in prioritizing data collection </li></ul>
  5. 5. Violence against/among children – a need of indicators monitoring <ul><li>CRC General comment N.13 </li></ul><ul><li>Tendencies of retrogressive policies with regard to challenging behavior of adolescents </li></ul><ul><li>Misuse of “zero tolerance” policies </li></ul><ul><li>Selective focus on high-profile cases vs. evidence-based analysis of societal/contextual trends </li></ul><ul><li>Ban of corporal punishment of children – important indicator. Evaluation of prevention activities (e.g., parent training programs) </li></ul>
  6. 6. A need for balancing to secure holistic approach and avoid fragmentation <ul><li>Protection – participation – provision </li></ul><ul><li>Economic/social/cultural – civil/political rights </li></ul><ul><li>Right to life/survival – right to development </li></ul><ul><li>Quantitative – qualitative analysis </li></ul><ul><li>Process - outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Risk factors – protective factors (resilience) </li></ul><ul><li>Legal measures (criminalization of offenses)– preventive measures (e.g., parent training) </li></ul><ul><li>Evidence – values </li></ul><ul><li>Quantity – quality – direction of measures </li></ul>
  7. 7. Safeguards to prevent pitfalls in the process of monitoring <ul><li>EU child rights agenda plus monitoring of implementation of UN CRC – unique opportunity of effective combination, to prevent fragmented approach. E.g., early childhood indicators (CRC) </li></ul><ul><li>Meaning of data collection and monitoring: who needs it? The need of self-reflection and self-critical analysis – how to motivate governments? </li></ul><ul><li>Openness and transparency of the process is crucial for supporting the culture of evaluation as a basic condition for healthy policies </li></ul><ul><li>Large number of just quantitative data may hide the systemic challenges. Qualitative approach needs to be added, to monitor contextual trends, involvement of children, attitudes, de-facto discrimination, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Synergies: EC – FRA - CRC, CRPD, CoE, NGOs,,etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Public health approach can be helpful </li></ul>
  8. 8. Most important finding (CAMHEE and other projects /studies ) - identification of existing gaps and vicious circles <ul><li>Lack of evidence based national policies </li></ul><ul><li>Weak culture of evaluation of outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of involvement of service users in decision making – participation and empowerment principles challenged </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of trust between main actors (government, civil society, professional groups). Lack of self-critical analysis by governmental sector – hence defensive ness and self-feeding systems of care </li></ul><ul><li>Weak intersectorial coordination. Lack of managerial skills in all levels (policy, services, individual cases) </li></ul><ul><li>COMBINATION OF THESE GAPS MAY LEAD TO INEFFECTIVE ALLOCATION OF RESOURCES AND SYSTEMIC FAILURES </li></ul>
  9. 9. A need to break vicious circles – opportunities and challenges. What is the role of monitoring and indicators? <ul><li>Think globally, act locally – how can this principle be applied to holistic realization of child rights in the context of EU enlargement? </li></ul><ul><li>How to translate messages from modern research into everyday practice of policy makers and service providers? </li></ul><ul><li>How to make arguments based on evidence and human rights approach prevail over arguments based on lobby of interest groups and “historical” principle of resource allocations? </li></ul><ul><li>How can be issues of pr otection of rights of children raised higher in political agenda? </li></ul><ul><li>How to form a strong coalition of stakeholders on the side of progressive realization of the CRC? How to motivate stakeholders? </li></ul><ul><li>Independent monitoring of implementation of child rights , with meaningful data collection, is a crucial issue. Importance of good governance and strong civil society </li></ul><ul><li>It is of vital importance for the future of EU that , EU countries break vicious circles of stigma, helplessness and social exclusion and develop effective child friendly services , with dignity and respect as key concepts </li></ul>

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