Statement by the DCI-Americas region on the occasion of the 30th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child

On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), DCI-Americas, composed of national and regional offices of the Defence for Children International (DCI) Movement, greets the plenary and hopes that the recommendations presented by children and civil society will be taken into account by governments in order to ensure the continuing implementation of the Convention that guarantees their rights, strengthens democracies and contributes to worldwide peace.

We would like to draw your attention on the situation in Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Ecuador, Venezuela and Brazil, among others countries, which are experiencing political turmoil, due to the effects of neoliberal policies generating economic inequality, migration, family dismemberment, social exclusion, stigmatisation, lack of decent employment and criminalisation of poverty. The most vulnerable populations suffer the most, including girls and boys, who represent approximately 300 million children in the region.

The rising tide of authoritarian populism, the persecution of human rights defenders and the attempt to silence the voices of children and adolescents who are human rights defenders, have resulted in killings, torture, mistreatment, protected by a culture of impunity. In this regard, the Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty is eloquent when it states that “deprivation of liberty is deprivation of childhood”.

In this event, boys and girls asked the following:

  • To be taken into account in all social issues, economic policies that affect them. They say “yes to direct participation and equal treatment”.
  • A promising future where the States secure all their rights by implementing systems of guarantee, that enable the coordination of different governmental agencies and civil society, ensuring that sufficient resources are being allocated to the elaboration of plans and programmes.
  • With regard to the environment, they called to protect the planet through respectful interventions and impact assessments that prevent damage, pollution and degradation of nature.
  • To be recognised, ensure their actions as child human rights defenders are guaranteed, that they are protected and remain free from persecution, torture and mistreatment.

In this context we support the children’s wakeup call following the pledges to Member States at the UN on 20 November :

What are the States of the Americas region going to do now that children and adolescents have made their voices heard at the United Nations on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Convention?