Update: 30.05.2012

NGO Report in Front of the Committee Requests More Equality for Children within Switzerland

Children are not treated equally in Switzerland. This is the outcome of the second report presented by the Swiss Netwok for the Rights of the Child to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child on 22 June 2009. A strong disparity exists between the 26 cantons. Those differences occur in access to education or protection of vulnerable children such as handicapped children, children in poverty or unaccompanied minors. Those disparities between cantons are a result of structural weaknesses on the cooperation between them. The situation of the children could be improved substantially if the Confederation would elaborate a national action plan to guarantee the implementation of children’s rights and establish a national human rights institution.

Public services aren’t aware of children’s rights

According to the Swiss Network for the Rights of the Child, the inadequate awareness of the children’s rights is the main obstacle for the implementation of children’s right in Switzerland. The report goes on: “the first consequence of this is that children are not considered as an important part in the legal process and thus, are not included in the decision-making process. As far as administrative procedures are concerned, authorities aren’t taking the interest of the child into considerations. The child’s interest is one of, if not the most important  pillar of the Convention on children’s right. More over, the current laws regarding children are not elaborated within the Convention’s perspectives. We regret that information programs are not proposed to lawyers or judges”

Recommendations of the United Nations not implemented

The Swiss Network for the Rights of the Child is a coalition that gathers 54 NGOs, including Humanrights.ch. It has published its second report for the UN on the 22nd June 2009 in Bern. This report was published within the procedure created by the article 44 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child which enforces each state party to submit every 5 years a periodical review to the committee. This report should contain information on how Switzerland has implemented children’s rights. The Swiss report, expected since 2007 should be published at the end of 2009. The NGO report regrets that recommendations made to Switzerland by the Committee have not really been implemented.

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