Fundamental Rights Charter must be part of EU Withdrawal Bill, say children’s rights NGOs

Children’s rights organisations, under the membership of Eurochild, raise concerns over the UK Government’s rejection of calls to fully incorporate the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights into law; the UK Government believes that this was not necessary as a number of the Charter rights were already located in UN treaties which the UK Government have ratified. 

Yet the repeated reluctance of successive UK Governments to fully incorporate UN human rights treaties, such as the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into domestic law, in spite of successive UN Committee recommendations, has resulted in children not having an equivalent legislative protection under UK law. “In the absence of the UNCRC being brought fully into UK law, the Charter must now be transposed fully through the EU (Withdrawal) Bill” – an appeal made by Eurochild members Children in Wales, Children’s Rights Alliance for England, Children in Scotland and Children’s Rights Alliance (Ireland), Together (Scottish Alliance for Children’s Rights).

The outcome of UK withdrawal from the European Union will have lasting implications and consequences for children living in the EU and the UK, including the devolved nations. 

Eurochild’s National Networks have launched a Statement and Call to Action, drawing attention to the distinct challenges which will confront children and young people in the devolved nations of the UK and Ireland, including the need to safeguard the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland and meaningfully engage the Welsh and Scottish Governments as part the Brexit negotiations. 

Eurochild members made this appeal at an event with representatives from the Children’s Commissioner’s offices for an event on ‘Children’s Rights following Brexit’ which took place in Westminster on 13th September. This seminar organised by European Children’s Rights Unit of University of Liverpool, set out some of the key priorities which will affect those under 18 and considered what actions needed to be taken to ensure that they receive appropriate exposure in the broader Brexit negotiations.

 

About Eurochild:

Eurochild is a network of organisations working with and for children throughout Europe, striving for a society that respects the rights of children. With 165 members across 33 countries, the network advocates for children’s rights and well-being to be at the heart of policymaking.

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