Jo Glennie, one of our Operations and Business Managers, comments on the UNCRC bill and what it means for Right There.
I was delighted at the news that the UN Convention on the rights of the child (UNCRC) Scotland Bill had finally passed through the Scottish Parliament on Friday 8th December following a unanimous vote. I feel very proud of Scotland for being the first devolved nation to incorporate UNCRC into domestic law to ensure children’s rights are given the highest possible protection. Hats off to everyone who made it happen, especially the children and young people across Scotland who made sure they had their voices heard throughout the process.
For us at Right There, this historic landmark moment in history for children’s rights in Scotland, was eagerly anticipated in line with our new ‘Equalities in Action’ initiative launched across the organisation earlier this year. This is all about putting the rights of the people we support, of all ages, at the centre of everything we do, including our policies, programmes and activities. Naturally, when it comes to children’s rights, a significant part of the initiative was designed with the UNCRC at the centre.
We are currently embarking on carrying out a Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA) across our 3 programme areas– For People, At Home, and In the Community – following the design and introduction of a bespoke impact assessment tool incorporating all Articles outlined within the UNCRC. This assessment process will allow us to scrutinise and evaluate everything we do against protecting and upholding the rights of children and young people up to the age of 18, allowing us to identify and address any potential adverse effects, work to mitigate them, whilst also maximising on the positive impacts. Simultaneously, we will also be carrying out an Adult Rights Impact Assessment (ARIA) on our programmes, evaluating and measuring everything we do across our programmes for adults aged 18+ against all Articles outlined within the European Convention on Human Rights (EHCR).
We recently developed a new robust framework for embedding a rights-based approach across the full organisation and have started rolling out training and awareness sessions with our staff teams. Crucially, our Equalities in Action initiative will help us champion the best interests of children, young people and adults in all that we do, whilst also ensuring our staff teams feel fully equipped and confident in supporting children, young people and adults to recognise and claim their rights too.
I’m really excited to see how our Equalities in Action initiative grows and evolves over the coming weeks and months and the positive impact it will undoubtedly have in protecting and upholding the rights of every child, young person and adult we support.