Maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health

20th anniversary : Convention on the Rights of the Child

20 November 2009

Girl queuing for food

On 20 November 2009, the international community will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) by the United Nations General Assembly.

The CRC is unique -- when adopted in 1989, it was the first legally-binding international convention to affirm human rights for all children. To date, it is the most widely and rapidly ratified human rights treaty in history, with 193 states parties. Over the past 20 years, the treaty has inspired changes in laws to better protect children and adolescents in countries across all regions.

On the occasion of the anniversary, WHO's Department Child and Adolescent Health and Development, in collaboration with UNICEF and other partners, is convening a technical consultation on the application of the CRC as a legal framework for improving child and adolescent health.

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