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Every Child Doesn't Have Rights & Other Children's Rights Issues.


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This is a presentation I delivered to the 10th National Playwork Conference in March 2012.

Published in: Education
  • I know that while making the choice to recover was crucial, and having the will comes in handy, but it is the girls in this program and their support that has helped me make it this far. I have been in recovery without purging for two months. I know I still have a long way to go, but I could not imagine doing it on my own. Even in this short amount of time, I can see myself emerging and the world is opening up before me. I have started making plans to do the things I’ve wanted to do for years, but that got lost in my bulimia cycle. Just taking that first step in recovery, has made me see what is really important. ♣♣♣
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  • I know that while making the choice to recover was crucial, and having the will comes in handy, but it is the girls in this program and their support that has helped me make it this far. I have been in recovery without purging for two months. I know I still have a long way to go, but I could not imagine doing it on my own. Even in this short amount of time, I can see myself emerging and the world is opening up before me. I have started making plans to do the things I’ve wanted to do for years, but that got lost in my bulimia cycle. Just taking that first step in recovery, has made me see what is really important. ♥♥♥
    Are you sure you want to  Yes  No
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Every Child Doesn't Have Rights & Other Children's Rights Issues.

  1. 1. Every Child Doesnt Have Rights & OtherChildrens Rights IssuesDavid StonehouseSenior LecturerTel: 01695 657003E-mail: the University of choice
  2. 2. What Rights Do You Have? List the rights you have as an adult. Prioritise the rights you have listed Would other people identify & prioritise their rights differently Do children have the same rights as you? Do we, as a nation, promote the rights of children? Do children have a high profile within our society?the University of choice
  3. 3. Not All Rights Are Of The Same Order Natural – Right to life Universal – UN Declaration on Human Rights Time & Place – Due to living in a certain country Welfare Rights – Legal benefits & entitlements Political & Religiousthe University of choice
  4. 4. National Children’s Bureau (1992) 3 Main Approaches to Children’s Rights Protectionist – sees the role of adults as guardians & defenders of children. Liberationist – claim that children are an oppressed minority group Pragmatism – tries to strike a balance between the two.the University of choice
  5. 5. What View Does The Government Take? National Committee of Inquiry into Prevention of Child Abuse 1994-96 “Childhood Matters.” identified that Universal provisions are failing to protect children. Systems in themselves abusive to children High prevalence of poverty & deprivation. High tolerance of abuse in our society & this helps to facilitate conditions which lead to abuse.the University of choice
  6. 6. CHILDREN ACT 1989the University of choice
  7. 7. Children Act 1989 Strongly influenced by the outcome of the Cleveland Inquiry. Replaced a mass of complicated and inconsistent legislation. Regarded as a major piece of reforming legislation for children and young people.the University of choice
  8. 8. Public and Private Law Private Law. Covers private disputes about children e.g;- living arrangements following divorce, paternity issues and child maintenance. Public Law. Covers intervention by local authorities e.g.;- compulsory intervention by social services and voluntary provision of services and the regulation of substitute care (fostering and child minding etc.)the University of choice
  9. 9. Main Principles of the Children Act 1989. The welfare of the child is paramount. Parental Responsibility- physical,emotional and moral welfare. Partnership- working together. Participation- take into consideration children’s wishes and feelings. Protection- from serious harm, s.47. Provision- of services, s.17.the University of choice
  10. 10. Welfare Principle. Child’s welfare is paramount. Courts should pay regard to:- -Wishes and feelings of the child. -Physical, educational and emotional needs. -Likely effect of any change in circumstances. -Age, sex, cultural and linguistic background.the University of choice
  11. 11. Welfare Principle - Harm suffered, or at risk of suffering. - Capability of parents and any other person in meeting the child’s needs. A range of powers are available to the court. The court should only make an order if it is in the child’s best interests.the University of choice
  12. 12. Who has Parental Responsibility? Child’s mother Where a child’s natural mother and natural father were married to each other at the time of his/her birth. A father not married to the mother does not have PR. He can acquire it - births registered after 1st December 2003 if fathers name appears on birth certificate as the father - re-register the birth to include fathers name as the father. - marry the mother of the child.■ Adoptive parents, from the date of adoption. Parents cease to have responsibility■ Those with a residence order. Parents retain responsibility■ A Local Authority. Parents do not lose responsibility■ Guardian – parents can appoint before death, or court after.the University of choice
  13. 13. Partnership Families matter Wide definition of family, the Act recognises the part played by significant others e.g. extended families, foster families. Rights that parents have flow from their duties toward their children.the University of choice
  14. 14. Successful Features of Partnership. Recognise unequal power between professionals and families. Shared commitment to negotiation on how to safeguard children’s welfare. Mutual respect for viewpoints. Recognise and address parents needs. Good communication skills and establishment of trust.the University of choice
  15. 15. Protecting children. Children have a right not to be mistreated and adults are in a position to act as advocates to prevent mistreatment continuing. Abuse of any sort can cause long-term effects both for the child and others. Tackling abuse could be one of the most productive things we do to protect future generations from abuse.the University of choice
  16. 16. S.47 Children Act 1989 Where a child is suspected to be suffering, or is likely to suffer significant harm Section 47 enquiries are undertaken. All reasonable attempts must be made to gain the co-operation of parents. Without co-operation there are a variety of legal powers available to protect children e.g.EPO The authority must make such enquiries as are necessary to decide on required action, advocates multi-agency consultation.the University of choice
  17. 17. S. 17 Children Act 1989 Duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children in need which includes providing support and services for their families. The effectiveness with which a child’s needs are assessed will be key to the effectiveness of subsequent actions and services, and ultimately to the outcomes for the child.the University of choice
  18. 18. CHILDREN ACT 2004the University of choice
  19. 19. Driving Force For Children Act 2004 2003 Green Paper Every Child Matters recognised the need for the government to bring about radical changes in the whole system of children’s services. Every Child Matters sets out an agenda for change to be led by Local Authorities and now The Children Act 2004 strengthens this through statute law.the University of choice
  20. 20. Children Act 2004 Provides a legislative framework for improving children’s lives Covers universal services which children access. Encourage integrated planning, commissioning & delivery of services for children. Gives Local Authorities the lead role to bring together local partnersthe University of choice
  21. 21. Five Key Outcomes Recognised Be healthy Stay Safe Enjoy & Achieve Make a Positive Contribution Achieve Economic well-BeingThe Children Act 2004 Gives Legal Force To These Outcomesthe University of choice
  22. 22. The UK Children’s Commissioners■ Maggie Atkinson – England■ Tam Baillie – Scotland■ Patricia Lewsley-Mooney – Northern Ireland■ Keith Towler – Wales Champion Children’s Needs 9th June 2008 Presented paper “UK Children’s Commissioners’ Report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.”the University of choice
  23. 23. UK Children’s Commissioners’ Report to the UNCommittee on the Rights of the Child. 9th June 2008 ■ 12.4 million Children 0-19 yrs in England ■ 3.1 million children living in poverty. ■ 1 million children living in poor housing. ■ Child mental health has deteriorated over the last 30 years. ■ Obesity in children has risen by almost 50% in the last ten years. ■ High numbers of children are locked up, compared to other EU countries. ■ Children feel increasingly pressurised by school, exams & commercial marketing. (Aynsley-Green, 2008)the University of choice
  24. 24. U.N. CONVENTION ON THE RIGHTS OF THE CHILD 1989the University of choice
  25. 25. UNICEF United Nations Childrens FundUnited Nations International Childrens Emergency Fund UNICEF’s mission is to advocate for the protection of children’s rights, to help meet their basic needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential.the University of choice
  26. 26. U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989 Reports of grave injustices suffered by children: high infant mortality, deficient health care, limited opportunities for basic education. There was also alarming accounts of children being abused & exploited as prostitutes or in harmful jobs, of children in prison or in other difficult circumstances, and of children as refugees and victims of armed conflict.the University of choice
  27. 27. U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989■ Ten Years in Consultation with a wide range of experts.■ Adopted and opened for signatures, ratification and accession by the General Assembly of the United Nations on the 20th November 1989.■ Came into force on the 2nd September 1990 after the minimum number of 20 countries had signed and ratified the convention.the University of choice
  28. 28. U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child UK ratified the convention on the 16th December 1991. Ratified by every country in the world except two. Countries are held accountable to the international community Non negotiable standards & obligationsthe University of choice
  29. 29. U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989■ Each country is required to submit reports to the “Committee on the Rights of the Child.” Independent body of experts.■ 2 years after initial ratification and then every 5 years thereafter.■ Stating how the articles and standards of the convention are being implemented and reporting on the status of children’s rights.the University of choice
  30. 30. Four Core Principles of the Convention1. Non-discrimination2. Devotion to the best interests of the child3. The right to life, survival and development4. Respect for the views of the childthe University of choice
  31. 31. Children’s Rights Are Set Out In 54 Articles 4 Categories of rights2.Guiding Principles3.Survival & Development Rights4.Protection Rights5.Participation Rightsthe University of choice
  32. 32. Article 311. States Parties recognize the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child and to participate freely in cultural life and the arts.2. States Parties shall respect and promote the right of the child to participate fully in cultural and artistic life and shall encourage the provision of appropriate and equal opportunities for cultural, artistic, recreational and leisure activity.the University of choice
  33. 33. Article 31Plowden (2010:6) states that having Article 31 “makes a clear statement that play is a right in children’s lives that is equal to any other.” As Playworkers we must Be advocates Be Champions Be Inclusivethe University of choice
  34. 34. Article 121. States Parties shall assure to the child who is capable of forming his or her own views the right to express those views freely in all matters affecting the child, the views of the child being given due weight in accordance with the age and maturity of the child.the University of choice
  35. 35. Article 12As playworkers we need to ensure that children and young people are consulted in all aspects of our play provision (Davy & Gallagher, 2006).We need to make them active members in decision making (Cole-Hamilton, 2008). As Playworkers we must make sure that it is not lip service only and recognise and remove barriersthe University of choice
  36. 36. Article 131. States Parties shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of the child’s choice.the University of choice
  37. 37. Article 13 As Playworkers we must Allow children freedom to express themselves Also provide information in a range of media However, we must also be aware that freedom of expression of one child must not violate the rights of another, where for example discriminatory views are being voiced. (Cole-Hamilton, 2008)the University of choice
  38. 38. Article 231. States Parties recognise that a mentally or physically disabled child should enjoy a full and decent life, in conditions which ensure dignity, promote self-reliance and facilitate the child’s active participation in the community.the University of choice
  39. 39. Article 23 As Playworkers we must Make our play provision as open and welcoming to all children Is your provision accessible to all? Can disabled children participate fully in the play experience? As Plowden (2010:16) states “disabled children, or those with specific needs, often miss out on the opportunity to freely play in an environment where they feel safe to do so.”the University of choice
  40. 40. Highlights Of The Convention Every child has the inherent right to life, and states shall ensure to the maximum child survival & development Every child has the right to a name and nationality from birth Children shall not be separated from their parents, except by competent authorities for their well-being Parents have the primary responsibility for a child’s upbringing, but states shall provide them with assistance & develop child-care institutions Primary education should be free & compulsory.the University of choice
  41. 41. Children EverywhereWithout Discrimination Have The Right To Survival To develop to their fullest potential To protection from harmful influences, abuse & exploitation and To participate fully in family, cultural & social life.the University of choice
  42. 42. UK/Mozambique Statistics (UNICEF, 2008)
  43. 43. Under 5 Mortality rate UK  Mozambique 1960 27 1960 313 1990 10 1990 235 2008 6 2008 138Under 5 Mortality Under 5 Mortality Rank Rank 158 out of 199 20 out of 199the University of choice
  44. 44. Life Expectancy At Birth UK 2006 79 yrs  Mozambique 2006 42 yrs
  45. 45. Primary School Enrolment/Attendance UK  Mozambique 2000-2006 99% 2000-2006 60%
  46. 46. ADVOCACYthe University of choice
  47. 47. Playwork Principles (Skills Active, 2004)4.For playworkers, the play process takesprecedence and playworkers act asadvocates for play when engaging withadult led agendas.“The role of the playworker is to championthe right of the child to play and questionadult agendas.” (Conway, 2008:121)the University of choice
  48. 48. Why advocate?■ Children are sometimes hopeless because there is no hope, helpless because there is no help and compliant because there is no alternative. Powerlessness is the food they eat, the air they breathe and the beds they sleep in. (Kitzinger,1990:173)the University of choice
  49. 49. Definition of Advocacy■ Advocates are risk takers who challenge the status quo (Royea and Appl, 2009)■ Child advocacy is any individual or cooperative action that strives to enrich the lives of children, including challenging injustices and promoting overall welfare (Pithouse and Crowley 2007).the University of choice
  50. 50. AdvocacyAdvocacy is speaking up for, or acting on behalf of, yourself or another person. (Cambridgeshire County Council, 2008)the University of choice
  51. 51. BibliographyAynsley-Green, A. (2008) UK Children’s Commissioners’ Report to the UNCommittee on the Rights of the Child.Cambridge County Council (2008) What is Advocacy? C8D0-4AEB-81B1-D747E8959EC5/0/Whatisadvocacy.pdf (accessed 24th November 2011)Cole-Hamilton, I. (2008) Children’s Rights and Play. In Brown, F. And Taylor,C. (eds) Foundations of Playwork. Berkshire: Open University Press.Conway, M. (2008) ‘The Playwork Principles’ In: Brown, F. & Taylor, C. (eds) Foundations Of Playwork. Berkshire: Open University Press. pp. 119-122.Davy, A. & Gallagher, J. (2006) New Playwork: Play And Care For Children 4– 16. Fourth Edition. London: Delmar Cengage Learning.Department For Education & Skills (2003) Every Child Matters, London: HMSODepartment of Health (1989) The Children Act. London: HMSODepartment of Health (2004) The Children Act London: HMSOthe University of choice
  52. 52. BibliographyKitzinger, J. (1990) ‘Who Are You Kidding? Children, Power, and the Struggleagainst Sexual Abuse’, in A. James and A. Prout (eds) Constructing andReconstructing Childhood: Contemporary Issues in the Sociological Study ofChildhood, pp. 157–83. New York: The Falmer Press.Pithouse, A.,Crowley, A. (2007). Adults rule? Children and Early ChildhoodEducation Journal (2009) 37:89–91Plowden, L. (2010) ‘Article 31: A Playwork Perspective.’ Play Today. Winter(68) p 16.Royea, A., Appl, A. (2009) Advocacy and complaints to social services.Children and Society, 21, 201–213Skills Active (2004) Playwork Principles. (accessed 24 November 2011)UNICEF (2008) Information By Country on 9/11/10)the University of choice