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Children’s rights are now officially incorporated in Scottish law

The Scottish Parliament unanimously passed a bill that will incorporate the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into Scots law.

On 16 March, the Scottish Parliament unanimously passed the UNCRC Incorporation Bill, making effectively children’s rights binding in Scottish law. This historic moment comes after decades of campaigning by Eurochild’s member, Together, children and young people.

The law pushes public authorities and all organisations providing services for children to embed children’s rights in everything they do and it will affect a range of different areas, including education, healthcare, policing and transport. Moreover, the bill will make it possible for children to complain to the courts, in the unfortunate case their rights are not respected. 

“In passing this Bill, the Scottish Parliament is making a promise to children and young people that their human rights will be at the heart of every decision made in Scotland.”, said Juliet Harris, Director of Together.

While this certainly calls for celebrations, Together and their members are already looking ahead. In fact, the law will officially come into effect 6 months after getting the Royal Assent and child rights organisations are already campaigning to ensure the law translates into a practical impact on the lives of children and young people.

Read Together’s statement.