UNICEF Global     TR
Leave your contact details to get regular news from UNICEF

Press Centre (9/2010)

2010/09/30 - Parliament Starts New Legislative Year with Children's Rights

30 September 2010, Ankara - Members of the Parliament from all political parties are beginning the new legislative year by discussing child rights. A workshop on Parliament's Role in Promoting and Protecting Children's Rights gets under way today just one day before the Assembly's official opening ceremony. Foreign parliamentarians and experts brought together with the support of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) will also be there to give their views.

The event is being hosted by the Child Rights Monitoring Committee, which was set up within the Turkish parliament in 2008, and consists of eight MPs. The Committee monitors children’s rights and gathers complaints and suggestions from both children and adults. As Turkey does not currently have an ombudsperson, the committee is also serving as a kind of child ombudsperson.

During his opening speech of the workshop, Prof. Dr. Cevdet Erdöl, chairman of the Child Rights Monitoring Committee said: through the work of our Committee we strive to create a better future for our children by making sure that any activity involving children should take into account the best interest of the child based on the Convention on the Rights of the Child.  

Among the speakers at the workshop are parliamentary specialist Stephen Hanmer and David Ponet UNICEF headquarters in New York. In addition, members of parliament from Germany and Parliamentary advisor from Sweden shared the experiences of their countries.

According to Stephen Hanmer, “Parliaments are a central institution uniquely positioned to create real and lasting change for children. In most contexts, parliaments can shape and enforce laws that promote children’s rights, allocate resources, hold governments and relevant sectors of society accountable, and represent the interests and voices of children.”

“By making direct contact with children and putting topics related to children onto the national agenda, the Child Rights Monitoring Committee of the Turkish Parliament is turning the right to participation, which is one of the basic principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, into a reality,” says UNICEF Acting Representative to Turkey, Regina De Dominicis.

The workshop will end on October 2, noon time with a meeting during which the future steps of the Child Rights Monitoring Committee will be discussed.

UNICEF Turkey Country Office, Yukarı Dikmen Mah. Alexsander Dubçek Cd. 7/106, 06450 Çankaya/Ankara. Telephone: +90 312 454 1000 Fax: +90 312 496 1461 E-mail: ankara@unicef.org