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Children's rights - substance or spin?

Date:14 AUG 2006

Jane Fortin Professor of Law Kings College London. The paper is based on a lecture presented at a conference arranged by the Child Studies postgraduate programme at Kings College London June 2006. In 2007 the UK will present to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child its third report (combined with its fourth) describing its progress in implementing the provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989 (UNCRC). Things have certainly moved on since the UK presented its first report to that committee in 1994. There does now appear to be a more widespread perception in the country that children have rights that ought to be respected. Surprisingly however many practitioners working with children give the government credit for a rights agenda which is simply not there. They talk with considerable confidence about the Children Act 2004 combined with the Every Child Matters programme which they say create a new children's rights agenda. The author says this of course is simply untrue. The Green Paper Every Child Matters Cm 5860...

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