Commissioner Bruce Adamson has warmly welcomed the Scottish Government’s commitment to “in every case possible” fully and directly incorporate the articles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into Scots law.
Full incorporation means that the whole of the UNCRC would be written into Scots law.
Direct incorporation means that the full legal text of the Convention would be written into Scots law.
Deputy First Minister John Swinney MSP made the commitment on Wednesday 20 November— International Children’s Day and the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the UNCRC. Reporting to the Parliament, he said:
…The bill that I will introduce next year [to incorporate the UNCRC] will take a maximalist approach. In every case possible, we will seek to incorporate the convention’s articles in full and directly, using the language of the convention.
Full and direct incorporation essential to properly deliver rights
In response the Commissioner said:
I warmly welcome the Scottish Government’s commitment to full and direct incorporation of the UNCRC before the end of this Parliamentary session.
I am encouraged that the Government has listened to the concerns of both my office and civil society around limiting protections to a suite of rights and has committed to putting the words of the Convention into Scots law. Words matter and the Articles contained within the Convention depend on each other for their full effect. Full and direct incorporation with justiciability for rights breaches is essential to properly deliver on children’s rights.
It is important that Scotland’s commitment to human rights leadership translates urgently into action. I look forward to continuing this work with both Government and civil society in the months ahead as legislation on incorporation comes before the Scottish Parliament.