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Pritzker Legal Research Center

International Children's Rights

Convention on the Rights of the Child

The Convention on the Rights of the Child is an international human rights treaty that sets out rights of children. The Convention entered into force on 2 September 1990. 

There are three Optional Protocols to the Convention: 

Commentary on the CRC

Scholarly commentaries provide article-by-article analysis of a convention, including citations to relevant cases, general comments, concluding observations, travaux préparatoires (preparatory works), and other documents. 

Committee on the Rights of the Child

The Committee on the Rights of the Child monitors implementation of the CRC by State parties. The website for the Committee provides access to general comments, state party reports and concluding observations, cases, and other materials. 

General CommentsThe Committee on the Rights of the Child publishes general comments that offer interpretations of the provisions in the CRC.

​State Party Reports: State party reports are submitted by state parties to the Committee to describe the efforts they have made or problems they have encountered when implementing the treaty's provisions. 

Concluding Observations: Concluding observations consist of observations and recommendations issued by the Committee after consideration of a state party's report. These include recommendations for how a State should take further action to implement the treaty. 

Jurisprudence: The Committee on the Rights of the Child may consider individual communications alleging violations of the Convention on the Rights of the Child or its two first Optional Protocols by State Parties to the Third Optional Protocol on a communications procedure. 

Other UN Human Rights Treaties & Treaty Bodies

Other international treaties also provide protection for the rights of children. For a detailed overview and research guidance for the core UN human rights instruments (e.g., CEDAW, ICCPR, etc.), see the PLRC International Human Rights Law Research Guide.

Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council

The special procedures of the Human Rights Council are independent human rights experts with thematic mandates (e.g., violence against women, arbitrary detention) or country-specific mandates.