Do Children Have Rights?

children rights

Having children brings many joys to your life. Not only do you have someone to love and spend time with, but they also keep you young by reminding you of what is important in life. Children also teach you how to be a better person by showing you how to see the world through their eyes. This is a refreshing view that encourages imagination, creativity and positivity.

The question of whether or not children have rights is a complex one. On the one hand, children are humans like all others and so they should have certain basic rights such as food, shelter and water. On the other hand, children have additional needs that make them different from adults and which need special protection. There is a large body of human rights law, both treaty and’soft’ law, which recognizes these extra needs. Most governments in the world have agreed to a list of these children’s rights and most have promised to respect them.

A central children’s right is that of self-determination, the ability to choose in respect of oneself, which forms the basis of derivative rights such as the right to marry, have sex, pursue a career or education and so on. Children do possess capacity for choosing, even very young children, but this is not enough to qualify them as having rights.

Children have the right to a standard of living that allows for their physical, mental, spiritual, moral and social development. This includes the right to rest and leisure, play and cultural activities. It is also important that they are protected from economic exploitation and have access to social security. It is also necessary that children are able to express their views freely in all matters affecting them.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, which was first adopted in 1989, has been ratified by most countries and is designed to ensure that children’s rights are protected. Despite this, many children still suffer from poverty, disease and abuse in both industrialized and developing countries. This is why international organizations such as UNICEF exist to help improve children’s lives throughout the world.