30th Anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (2019)

On November 20, 1989, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) in New York. 30 years later, the UNCRC is the most widely ratified UN Treaty. This treaty has played and will continue to play a central role in the improvement of the lives of children around the world. The UNCRC elevates the child as a person with his/her own rights, especially the right to express his/her opinion on these rights.

Ombudspersons for Children from across Europe have the unique role of monitoring but also advising domestic authorities on how they implement the UNCRC. They have the remit to report on any failures or omissions by national/regional authorities to safeguard and promote the rights of all children. As a network of 42 Independent Children’s Rights Institutions created in 1997, ENOC works collectively to protect and promote the rights of the child through the fullest implementation of the UNCRC. To celebrate this 30th anniversary in 2019, ENOC issued video statements (available below) with key messages from ENOC members on the achievements and challenges regarding children's rights. ENOC will also carry out an extensive work in 2020 on the specific issue of Child Rights Impact Assessments (CRIA), as a key mechanism for implementing the UNCRC and a crucial tool for advancing children’s rights.

Erinda Ballanca - the Ombudsman of Albania


Caroline Vrijens - the Flemish Children's Rights Commissioner


Elina Pekkarinen - The Ombudsman for Children in Finland


Geneviève Avenard - Children's Defender France


Theoni Koufonikolakou - Deputy Ombudsman for Children's Rights Greece


Niall Muldoon - the Ombudsman for Children in Ireland


Filomena Albano - the Italian Independent Authority for Children and Adolescents


Pauline Miceli - the Commissioner for Children in Malta


Margrite Kalverboer - the Ombudsman for Children in the Netherlands


Koulla Yiasouma - Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People


Mikolaj Pawlak - the Ombudsman for Children in Poland


Bruce Adamson - Children and Young People's Commissioner Scotland


Peter Svetina - the Human Rights Ombudsman of the Republic of Slovenia


Sally Holland - the Children’s Commissioner for Wales