Irish National Strategy on Children and Young People’s Participation in Decision-Making (2015-2020)
Ireland has become the first country in Europe to develop a strategy on child participation in decision-making. The strategy builds on the developing infrastructure for children’s participation established by the Irish Ministry for Children and Youth Affairs and other organisations since the publication of the National Children’s Strategy in 2000.
The goal of this strategy is to ensure that children and young people have a voice in their individual and collective everyday lives across the five national outcome areas set out in Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures: The National Policy Framework for Children and Young People, 2014-2020, namely: to be active and healthy; to be achieving in all areas of learning and development; to be safe and protected from harm; to enjoy economic security and opportunity; and to be connected, respected and contributing.
The strategy focuses on the everyday lives of children and young people and the places and spaces in which they are entitled to have a voice in decisions that affect their lives, including in community, education, health and well-being, and legal settings.
The strategy is primarily aimed at children and young people under the age of 18, but also embraces the voice of young people in the transition to adulthood. It is guided and influenced by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.