Policy Advocacy – Submissions to U.N. Bodies

Submissions to international bodies and organisations intended to advance child rights and child law.

Inputs to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioners Report on progress on ending child, early and forced marriages: A South African Perspective

CCL’s submissions are in response to the Call for inputs to inform the report by the Secretary-General on progress towards ending child, early and forced marriage worldwide and the guiding questions both iterated in UN General Assembly resolution 77/202 on “Child, early and forced marriage”  the contents of which will not be reiterated here. Our submissions substantively address various aspects of the law, policy, and practice related to each issue in South Africa.

The  submissions set out:

  1. The relevant legal framework and ongoing law reform processes;
  2. Data collection by the Department of Home Affairs;
  3. The prevalent practice of non-registration of customary marriages, recording of birth registrations and the effect of this on child marriages;
  4. Access to sexual reproductive health rights for adolescents;
  5. Access to social services.

Comments on Draft CRC General Comment No. 26: Children’s Rights and the Environment with a special focus on Climate Change

Following a series of workshops facilitating child engagement on the content of the draft General Comment No. 26, CCL submitted its comments on the draft to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child. The workshops took place at Ntwampe Technical School in Sekhukhune, Limpopo and at Phulong Secondary School in KwaThema, Gauteng, South Africa.

In September 2023 the UN Committee for the Rights of the Child launched the final version of General Comment No.26. View both the official and child-friendly versions below.

Alternative Report to the UNCRDP in Response to the Republic of South Africa’s State Party Report: Implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2023

In July 2023 CCL submitted its Alternative Report to the UNCRDP in Response to the Republic of South Africa’s State Party Report focusing on issues related to articles 24 on Education, 18 on the Liberty of Movement and Nationality, and 31 on Statistics and Data Collection in terms of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This submission concludes that although the South African government has adopted a significant number of legislation intended to ensure inclusivity, however, the promises made in the letter of the law and policy and the implementation of such laws and policies show a pervasive exclusion of CwDs. CwDs and their rights seem to be an afterthought although legislation and policy show otherwise.

Alternative Report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child to the Republic of South Africa’s State Party Report 2023

CCL tendered its submissions the the UNCRC to highlight issues of concern and provide important recommendations to be considered by the State. The issues identified and recommendations offered reflect the experience, research and engagements with stakeholders, particularly the impact on children affected.

This report addresses (1)The minimum age for marriage and ongoing legal reforms towards outlawing child marriages; (2) Birth registration, statelessness and nationality; (3) Children’s rights and the business sector, specifically as it relates to the impact of climate change on the rights of the child and environmental health; (4) Measures adopted regarding cultural practices that negatively affect children, and the balancing of indigenous peoples’ rights alongside children’s rights; (5) The right to basic education for Children with Disabilities (CwDs) and challenges regarding access to real infrastructure and school admission; (6) Barriers to access to education for undocumented learners; (7) The challenges regarding children in street situations; (8) Challenges pertaining to the administration of child justice, with specific references children sentenced in Secure Care Centres; (9) Concerns regarding children as victims of sexual violence in schools and their right to give witness testimony in proceedings in civil disciplinary proceedings and (10) The right of a child witness to meaningfully participate in court during sexual violence proceedings.

2015/2016 Submissions & concluding observations from the UNCRC

Civil society’s (ARC-CRSA) Alternate Report – 31 Oct 2015

United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child

Civil society’s (ARC-CRSA) Supplementary Report – August 2016

UNCRC Concluding Observations on the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) – 7 Oct 2016

UNCRC Concluding Observations on the Optional Protocol to the CRC

Skip to content