In 2020 ENOC mainly focused on the topic of Child Rights Impact Assessment (CRIA) by exploring how and to what extent CRIAs have been developed and conducted in the different ENOC member countries and regions. The work on CRIA has been led by the Office of the Children and Young People’s Commissioner Scotland supported by a specially created thematic Working Group. The WG Chair office launched a special questionnaire on the theme and collected feedback from 30 ENOC members from across Europe whose contributions have been collated and analysed in a Synthesis Report. Based on the findings of the Synthesis Report and supported by Lisa Payne, external independent expert advisor on CRIA to ENOC, an exchange of views between ENOC members and recognized international experts in the CRIA area aiming at informing the preliminary terms of the ENOC position statement on the same theme took place on the occasion of a digital ENOC working Seminar in September 2020. The Working Group also worked on the designing of a Common Framework of Reference for carrying out CRIAs, to allow ENOC members but also relevant International, European, national, and regional stakeholders to develop and implement CRIAs as a standard practice. This step-by-step guide is flexible and adaptable to the local context and needs of ENOC members.
Preparation of the statement provided an important opportunity to bring to the attention of decision and policy makers within all ENOC jurisdictions and EU institutions the importance of developing and implementing a process of child rights impact assessment as a means of ensuring that laws, policies and decisions are compliant with children and young people’s rights.
Child Rights Impact Assessment is a process that supports a systematic assessment of the impact on the rights, needs and interests of children and young people affected by decisions and actions of governments, institutions and others in the areas of law, policy and practice. The intent is to understand how a proposed course of action will contribute to or undermine fulfilment of children’s rights, and how positive impacts can be maximised and negative impacts avoided or mitigated or alternatives considered.
The European Network of Young Advisors (ENYA), a ENOC led child participation project gathering young advisors from 13 ENOC countries/regions, provided views and recommendations captured during the parallel work of ENYA on CRIA and incorporated into this year’s ENOC position statement on CRIA.
The ENOC 2020 position statement on Child Rights Impact Assessment (CRIA) has been unanimously adopted by the ENOC Annual General Assembly held digitally on 17-18 November 2020.