Natisni vsebino

On Children's Day, calls for better protection

20.11.2016 11:30
Category: work and news

Slovenia is considered a child-friendly country by many measures, but calls for fresh measures nevertheless resonate around Universal Children's Day, the 20 November holiday marking the anniversary of the adoption of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child 27 years ago.

Children are citizens too and need to be heard and acknowledged, the president of the Slovenian children's parliament Kaja Petrovič has told the STA.

In decisions and plans concerning the youth and children, the views of the youth and children need to be taken into consideration, she stressed.

Children were given symbolic power on Friday as seven Slovenian municipalities provided kids with a chance to be mayors for a day as part of an initiative by UNICEF Slovenia.

Today children will present President Borut Pahor a proposal to give the presidency to children for a day.

The international day coincides with the entry into force of a ban on all corporal punishment of children under the changes to the domestic violence prevention act that were passed in late October.

The amendment is seen as a strong symbolic message, but associations dealing with children's rights say more is needed.

The Friends of Youth Association, which organises the children's parliament and includes over 70,000 children in its programmes every year, has highlighted several areas that require attention.

One of their proposals, which they have already sent to the government, is that a special council be set up to monitor the different issues related to children, issue warnings and propose solutions.

Moreover, they stress that children's rights should be addressed comprehensively, pointing to shortcomings in education, social care and healthcare.

Human Rights Ombudsman Vlasta Nussdorfer said that despite progress in some areas, Slovenia still did not meet all the requirements from the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

She finds it unacceptable that specific cases in healthcare or social care involving children are discussed publicly.

Child poverty is another area seen as in need of being addressed.

According to data recently released by Eurostat, 26.9% or 25m children in the EU were at risk of poverty or social exclusion in 2015, down from 27.5% in 2010.

In Slovenia the share was far below the EU average, at 16.6%, but it did increase by 1.4 percentage points over 2010.

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