News: The latest elections for the Committee on 25 June 2014. CRIN interviewed all candidates in advance of the elections. Read the interviews.
Role: The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child is the most powerful children's rights organisation in the world. It not only has the authority to influence governments' compliance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), but also to interpret and expand on the provisions set out in the CRC. And with the UN General Assembly's adoption of the Optional Protocol on a complaints mechanism in December 2011, the Committee will in future even be able to examine individual complaints relating to violations of children's rights.
How: Elections to the Committee on the Rights of the Child take place every two years. Committee members are elected for a term of four years. Article 43 of the Convention states that: “The members of the Committee shall be elected by States Parties from among their nationals and shall serve in their personal capacity, consideration being given to equitable geographical distribution, as well as to the principal legal systems.”
When: The terms of nine members of the Committee expire in February 2015. Elections of new members will be held during a meeting of States parties in December 2014 at the UN in New York. Some current members may go for re-election, and new candidates will be nominated by their States.
Action: NGOs cannot directly nominate a candidate, but they can influence the nomination of candidates at national level. CRIN and Child Rights Connect work together to encourage NGOs to:
- Identify qualified candidates in their region to serve on the Committee and approach them for their availability. NGOs can also advocate for the election of members whose term will expire;
- Coordinate with other advocates in the region to secure several good nominations. Check how regions are divided for voting purposes to make sure each region is adequately represented.
For more information, read a fact sheet by Child Rights Connect or contact Ilaria Paolazzi at paolazzi@childrightsconnect.