Children's rights: combatting exploitation, forced marriage and sexual abuse
MEPs call for more action to combat child trafficking and forced marriage, whilst stressing the crucial contribution that kids make in the fight against climate change.
- Better protect children in war zones and migration
- Fight statelessness: each baby should be recognised by a state
- Give access to age-appropriate sex education to avoid abuses
Following the 30th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child on 20 November, the European Parliament adopted a resolution, assessing the many challenges that children and youth face today. The text was approved by 495 votes in favour, 58 against and 87 abstentions on Tuesday.
Vulnerable children, children in migration
MEPs condemn all forms of violence against children, including forced marriage, female genital mutilation, trafficking, psychological violence and urge all EU countries to work on new strategies to eradicate sexual violence and child abuse both online and offline. They also call on member states to uphold legislation penalising the corporal punishment of kids.
The resolution calls for the Common European Asylum System to be fully implemented to improve conditions for children in migration. The best interests of the child should be a primary consideration in all decisions concerning children and migration. In particular, child protection should be the leading principle when dealing with unaccompanied children, rather than migration policies, says the text.
Children in armed conflicts, statelessness, inclusive education
Some children continue to be born stateless, including in the EU, and MEPs call on the countries concerned to address these problems. They also highlight, among others, children with disabilities, migrant backgrounds, children of LGBTI parents, those with imprisoned parents and children of so-called “foreign fighters” as disproportionally exposed to discrimination on multiple grounds.
Concerning children of foreign terrorist fighters held in north-east Syria, the resolution urges all EU countries to repatriate all kids with EU nationalities, taking into account their specific family situation.
The Parliament also calls on all EU countries to guarantee all children the right to an inclusive education, including age-appropriate information about sex and sexuality.
Kids, drivers of change
On a positive note, the resolution highlights the significant role children can play in shaping the political agenda as illustrated by the recent mobilisation against climate change led by young people. It finally urges all countries that have not yet ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and its additional protocols to do so as a matter of urgency.
This United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child has become the most widely ratified human rights treaty in history. The European Parliament organised a high-level conference on 20 November to mark its 30th anniversary, attended by, among others, Her Majesty the Queen of the Belgians.
- (+32) 2 28 31834 (BXL)
- (+33) 3 881 72420 (STR)
- (+32) 470 88 29 42
- Adopted text will be available here (26.11.2019)
- Watch a video recording of the debate (13.11.2019)
- Topical Digest: 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child
- At a glance: EU contribution to the fight against child poverty
- EP Research Briefing: Children's rights and the UN SDGs: A priority for EU external action
- EP Multimedia Package: free photos, video and audio material
- Committee on Foreign Affairs
Latest News from
Coronavirus: Commission boosts budget for repatriation flights and rescEU stockpile30/03/2020 10:33:00
The European Commission recently (27 March 2020) proposed to make €75 million from the EU budget available to help Member States repatriate EU nationals and to increase the budget of the RescEU medical stockpile.
A passenger who reserved his or her flight through a travel agency may bring an action for compensation for a long flight delay against the air carrier before the courts of the place of departure of the flight27/03/2020 11:10:00
Notwithstanding the absence of a contract between that passenger and the carrier, such an action comes within ‘matters relating to a contract’ within the meaning of the regulation on jurisdiction, with the result that it may be brought before the courts of the place of supply of the air carriage service.
Consumer credit agreements must specify clearly and concisely how the withdrawal period is to be calculated27/03/2020 09:25:00
It is not sufficient for an agreement to refer, with respect to mandatory information the communication of which to the consumer determines when the withdrawal period starts to run, to a provision of national law that itself refers to other provisions of national law.
Air pollution goes down as Europe takes hard measures to combat coronavirus26/03/2020 15:25:00
The European Environment Agency’s (EEA) data confirm large decreases in air pollutant concentrations – of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentrations in particular – largely due to reduced traffic and other activities, especially in major cities under lockdown measures. Reductions of around half have been seen in some locations. The EEA’s data are measured hourly, on the ground, at about 3,000 monitoring stations across European countries.
Coronavirus: Parliament to vote on €37 billion crisis response26/03/2020 14:43:00
MEPs will vote to make €37 billion from EU structural funds available to EU countries to tackle the coronavirus crisis during the plenary session on 26 March.
Speech by President von der Leyen at the European Parliament Plenary on the European coordinated response to the COVID-19 outbreak26/03/2020 13:25:00
I would firstly like to thank all those of you who have made this extraordinary session possible under such exceptional circumstances.
Coronavirus puts women in the frontline26/03/2020 11:33:00
In Europe, we are all adjusting to new ways of living because of the effects of the coronavirus.
ESMA Issues Guidance ON Accounting Implications OF COVID-1926/03/2020 09:25:00
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s securities markets regulator, has issued a Public Statement on some accounting implications of the economic support and relief measures adopted by EU Member States in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Antitrust: Commission prolongs the validity of block exemption for liner shipping consortia25/03/2020 16:43:00
The European Commission has prolonged for another four years the regulation outlining the conditions under which liner shipping consortia can provide joint services without infringing EU antitrust rules that prohibit anticompetitive agreements between companies.