Thursday, October 25, 2012

UNGA Report on Status of Indigenous Children's Rights

The UN Secretary-General has submitted a report on the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which was adopted in 1989 and has been ratified or acceded to by 193 states, to the  UN General Assembly. The report focuses on the rights of indigenous children, and finds that indigenous children suffer extreme forms of exclusion and discrimination, stating that "children of indigenous background often suffer within schools and communities from various forms of abuse rooted in discrimination and discriminatory attitudes."

It also finds, encouragingly, that "the creation and strengthening of indigenous peoples’ organizations, and the establishment of United Nations bodies and structures such as the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; and the various special procedures of the Human Rights Council and the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, as well as progressive developments in the jurisprudence of the Inter-American system of human rights, are offering unique opportunities to bring issues affecting indigenous children to the forefront of national, regional and global agendas."

The report concludes with recommendations for the way forward, including adopting measures to prevent and eliminate all forms of discrimination against indigenous children; facilitating the active participation of indigenous peoples in all stages of development planning affecting them; undertaking special measures towards the realization of the right to education of indigenous children, particularly girls; and taking special measures to promote the highest attainable standard of health and health-care services for indigenous children.

The report can be found here

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