“Even when these children are born and before they can say their first word, they are denied their rights to a dignified life” – Baskut Tuncak, former UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Toxics
Osnabrück, 28 October 2020 – Today the child rights organization Terre des Hommes is launching an international campaign “MY PLANET – MY RIGHTS” urging governments to recognize children’s right to a healthy environment through the adoption of a resolution on the human right to a healthy environment and an Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).
As part of the campaign, Terre des Hommes is initiating a global online petition which will be delivered to the UN Secretary General and the Chair of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child during the General Assembly in 2021 to prompt Member States to take action. Youth-led projects will take place in nearly 40 countries to promote the petition and the campaign’s global call.
Terre des Hommes is also publishing a report “Stop the silent pandemic – Every child has the right to develop in a non-toxic environment” to draw attention to the adverse effects of environmental pollution on children’s rights worldwide. The report calls on governments and the international community to recognize children’s right to a healthy environment and urges the adoption of eight key policy recommendations.
“Even when these children are born and before they can say their first word, they are denied their rights to a dignified life,” said Baskut Tuncak, former UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and Toxics and author of the Terre des Hommes study.
This ambitious call to action comes at a moment where the lives of children are at critical risk. The environmental crisis, one of the main drivers of COVID-19, is forcing millions of children to leave their homes, miss out on school and lose their lives. As we approach an irreversible ecological tipping point, significantly more lives will be threatened.
At the same time, there is a window of opportunity for large-scale change. Children and young people continue to speak up for climate action in one of the largest global social movements in history. Governments working on their COVID-19 recovery plans have an opportunity to put children at the center of building a more sustainable future. In September, several governments publicly committed to leading the recognition of the human right to a healthy environment and this month the Human Rights Council adopted a resolution on children’s rights and the environment.
Link to MY PLANET – MY RIGHTS campaign and online petition: http://my-planet-my-rights.org/en/
Click here for a copy of the report.
Karlenne April Enriquez at
Terre des Hommes works to improve the living conditions of the most underprivileged children and communities all over the world. It runs campaigns and engages in political advocacy seeking changes that contribute to the realization of children’s rights.