Somalia ratifies UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. U.S. still has not.

Child Rights

122412495Somalia today became the 195th state party to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), leaving just two countries who have yet to ratify: South Sudan (the world’s newest country) and the United States.

The CRC outlines a comprehensive list of rights for children, and the role they and families play in society to allow children to “develop their full potential, free from hunger and want, neglect and abuse.” The United States was one of the principle authors of the CRC, and already meets many of its standards. It is the most widely-ratified human rights treaty in history. And Americans support ratification by a 4-to-1 margin.

There is still a lot of work to be done in the United States when it comes to child rights. One in five children in our country live in poverty. About 2.5 American children are homeless. And 16 million kids live in food-insecure homes.

As UNICEF director Anthony Lake said in his statement on Somalia’s ratification, “The central message of the Convention is that every child deserves a fair start in life. What can be more important than that?”