Library

This library is a comprehensive collection of national and international good practice, policy, legal and academic publications, reports and resources on children and young people’s participation in decision-making.

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“The Pandemic is Galvanizing Change”: Shifting to a Critical and Decolonial Approach to Human Rights Education With Youth

The heightened visibility of racial discrimination coupled with the repression of young people’s civil and political rights during the COVID-19 pandemic is surfacing the need for human rights education (HRE) to address anti-racism more intentionally. HRE practitioners reflect on language, the limitations of celebrating diversity, and the need for critical consciousness and deliberative spaces in youth engagement programming to address lived injustices across communities. As children’s rights researchers and practitioners, we consider the interdependence of the rights to participation and non-discrimination and the need to recalibrate youth programs to consider age alongside race and other aspects of identity. The shift to a critical and decolonial approach to HRE includes embracing intersectionality and reflexivity, actively bringing BIPOC youth to the centre of defining and cultivating racial justice engagement to catalyze systemic-level change. We identify reflection questions for institutions, programs, and practitioners to support this journey.

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Author: Natasha Blanchet-Cohen, Geneviève Grégoire-Labrecque, Amy Cooper

Publisher: Canadian Journal of Children’s Rights

Date: 2021

Geographic Coverage: Canada, Worldwide

Type of Resource: Report

Sector/setting: Other

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Report

Availability: Open Access

Keywords: anti-racism, BIPOC, Human Rights Education, Non-discrimination, Participation, Young People

Children’s Views on Children’s Rights: A Systematic Literature Review

Children’s rights are set out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. This systematic literature review aimed to investigate children’s views of children’s rights, at a broad level. Nine papers were included, from a range of countries and contexts. They all accessed the views of children and young people (aged up to 18 years). A content analysis was carried out using a recursive process of hybrid aggregative-configurative synthesis, and themes within children’s views and factors that may affect these were identified. These were ‘awareness of rights’, ‘value placed on (importance of) rights’, ‘impact of having/not having rights fulfilled’, ‘realisation and respect of rights’, ‘equality of rights’, ‘identifying and categorising of rights’, and ‘factors that may affect children’s views’. These were developed into a progression of rights realisation and implications for practice and further research were considered.

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Author: Nicola Fairhall, Kevin Woods

Publisher: The International Journal of Children's Rights

Date: 2021

Geographic Coverage: Worldwide

Type of Resource: Review

Sector/setting: Other

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Journal

Availability: Open Access

Keywords: Children's Rights, Children's views, Review, UNCRC

Youth First: A Canadian Youth-led Initiative in the Midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic

This reflection writing was co-written by seven young people and three Master of Arts Child and Youth Care (MA CYC) students from Ryerson University. Our writing centres around a Canadian youth-led initiative called Youth First, developed as a MA CYC placement due to the lack of placement opportunities available during the pandemic. Youth First focused on creating safe and interactive spaces in cyberspace for young people during the pandemic. Through this reflection, we hope to share our experiences, accomplishments, lessons learned and overall reflection of being part of this initiative during a global pandemic.

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Author: Reah (Hyun Ju) Shin, Harleen Kaur, Catherine Howe, Justin Whitty, Kyla Quigley Regan Katerenchuk, Victoria Bonnell, Ronglan Cao, James Liu, Geoffrey Pearson

Publisher: The Canadian Journal of Children's Rights

Date: 2021

Geographic Coverage: Canada, Worldwide

Type of Resource: Journal

Sector/setting: Other

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Journal

Availability: Open Access

Keywords: canada, Child, Children's Rights, Covid, Covid-19, cyberspace, Participation, Young People, Youth, youth-led initiatives

Children’s Rights Budgeting and Social Accountability: Children’s Views on its Purposes, Processes and Their Participation

Children’s rights budgeting is an international human rights priority and the focus of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child’s 2016 General Comment on Public Budgeting for the Realisation of Children’s Rights. General Comment 19 was informed by a consultation that gathered the views of 2 693 children in 71 varied national contexts across all five UN regions. The article describes the process and findings of this consultation, setting out the views of children across the world as to how their governments should make spending decisions that are sufficient, equitable, efficient, transparent and participatory. The consultation provides unique insights into how children in very different contexts think about the ways in which their governments can and do allocate public funds for children and their families in ways that support or undermine the realisation of their rights. The article identifies some of the barriers to including children in decision making on public spending, but challenges assumptions that they are not able to be or interested in being involved. It suggests that if participatory budgeting is to be effective for children, it will require bespoke forms of social accountability. Key words: children’s rights; participation; budgeting; social accountability.

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Author: Laura Lundy, Karen Orr, Chelsea Marshall

Publisher: Global Campus of Human Rights

Date: 2020

Geographic Coverage: Worldwide

Type of Resource: Academic Research

Sector/setting: Academic

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Research

Availability: Open Access

Keywords: budgeting, Children's Rights, Participation, social accountability

Child-led Research: From Participating in Research to Leading It

The report outlines the key findings drawn from an exploratory research on the experiences of Bangladeshi and Syrian refugee children who led their own research and the actions taken based on their findings. The study argues that child-led research provides promising opportunities to engage children and young people in shaping policy and practice, ultimately creating change that led to better lives for them. Furthermore, this report includes an analysis of six child-led research projects carried out by young researchers in Brazil, Chile, Ghana, Romania, Sierra Leone and Sri Lanka. These projects were based largely on learning from this study and knowledge generated by the young researchers in Bangladesh, Lebanon and Jordan. In these six projects, child-led research provided children and young people with new avenues to influence decision-making by using the findings of their own research to put pressure on stakeholders and decision makers regarding issues around violence against children.

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Author: Patricio Cuevas-Parra, E. Kay M. Tisdall

Publisher: World Vision International

Date: 2019

Geographic Coverage: Worldwide

Type of Resource: Research

Sector/setting:

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Child-led Research

Availability: Open Access

Keywords: Child, Children, Participation, refugee, Youth

Face to Face: Children and Young People’s Right to Participate in Public Decision-making

Children’s and young people’s participation is critical to the realisation of their rights. A plethora of methods are employed by policy-makers, NGOs facilitating such engagement and children and young people themselves to ensure their views are included in public decision-making. The studies discussed here suggest that face to face engagement between rights-holders and duty-bearers holds a distinctive place among participative methods.

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Author: Chelsea Marshall, Bronagh Byrne, Laura Lundy

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Date: 2015

Geographic Coverage: Europe

Type of Resource: Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding › Chapter (peer-reviewed) › peer-review

Sector/setting: Academic

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Research

Availability: Open Access

Keywords: Children's Rights, Participation, Public decision-making

ChildLinks on Children’s Participation

This issue of ChildLinks looks at children's participation in decision-making and contains articles from DCEDIY and Hub na nÓg; Barnardos; DCU; Better Start AIM; and Dr Sheila Long.

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Author: Linda O'Sullivan, Mary Brereton, Lauren Maguire, Jenny Murphy, Sandra O'Neill, Laura McNally, Judith Byrne, Paula Gavin, Jacqueline Cullen, Dr. Sheila Long

Publisher: Barnardos

Date: 2021

Geographic Coverage: Ireland

Type of Resource: Publication

Sector/setting: Charity

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Report

Availability: Open Access

Keywords:

Digital Voices: Progressing Children’s Right to be Heard Through Social and Digital Media

Children’s right to be heard is a fundamental right expressed in Article 12 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Given the prominent role that digital technologies play in children’s lives, Digital Voices: Progressing children’s right to be heard through social and digital media asks whether social and digital media can support children’s right to be heard in public decision-making.

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Author: Brian O’Neill, Thuy Dinh, Kevin Lalor

Publisher: Technological University Dublin, on behalf of the Ombudsman for Children’s Office (OCO)

Date: 2021

Geographic Coverage: Ireland

Type of Resource: Report

Sector/setting: Academic

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Yes

Type of participation: Consultation With Children

Availability: Open Access

Keywords:  Article 12, Children's Rights, Children's Voices, Digital Technology, Digital Voices, Ombudsmanfor Children, UN Convention on the Rights of the Child

Children’s Participation in Decision-making: Balancing Protection with Shared Decision-making Using a Situational Perspective

Children’s participation in decision-making in the health care setting is complex because parents and health professionals tend to take a protective stance towards children to act in their best interest. Children prefer to be protected in some situations and to share decision-making in others. Adults in the health care setting need to consider children as individuals, rather than as a homogenous group, and take into account that a child’s competence and preferences will depend on the circumstances in every situation. This article argues for a situational perspective of children’s participation to act in the child’s best interest and to balance protection with shared decision-making, according to children’s rights and desires.

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Author: Imelda Coyne, Maria Harder

Publisher: Sage Publications

Date: 2011

Geographic Coverage: Worldwide

Type of Resource: Academic

Sector/setting: Academic

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Report

Availability: Restricted Access

Keywords: Children's Rights, Children’s Participation, Decision-making, Parents, Support

Children’s Participation in Decision Making From Child Welfare Workers’ Perspectives: A Systematic Review

This article explores child welfare workers’ experiences of children’s participation in decision making in the child protection system. The systematic review follows the principles of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses statement and includes 12 peer-reviewed articles published in academic journals from 2009 to 2019. Findings indicate that children’s participation in decision making is generally limited or nonexistent. The age of the child is an important determining factor concerning whether the child is given the opportunity to participate in decision making. Potential harm for children that may result from participation is considered when deciding on whether to include a child in the decision-making process.

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Author: Karmen Toros

Publisher: Sage Publications

Date: 2021

Geographic Coverage: Worldwide

Type of Resource: Academic

Sector/setting: Academic

Vulnerable groups: Children, Young People

Developed with children and young people? Not specified

Type of participation: Report

Availability: Restricted Access

Keywords: Child Participation, Child Welfare Worker, Decision-making, Protectionist Approach, Systematic Literature Review