Recommendations to Finland from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child has issued recommendations to Finland on the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the child. The recommendations concern, for example, child welfare, the prevention of violence against children, the rights of children with disabilities, issues related to children's mental health and social security.
In May, Finland was heard by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child on Finland’s implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The hearing was based on Finland’s periodic report, which was submitted in the summer of 2019. The Committee issued recommendations to Finland on 2 June 2023 based on the hearing.
In subjects within the scope of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health’s administrative branch, the Committee issued recommendations on child protection, preventing violence against children, rights of children with disabilities, social security, and issues related to children’s mental health. The Committee recommended Finland to adopt a comprehensive strategy for alternative care compliant with the UN Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children and reserve sufficient resources for the implementation of the strategy. The Committee welcomed the strategies already implemented in Finland for protecting children from various forms of violence and stressed that sufficient resources must be reserved for the action plans’ implementation.
To guarantee an adequate standard of living for all children, the Committee recommended Finland to avoid cuts in social security benefits that impact children at risk of poverty and exclusion. The Committee recommended Finland to strengthen its efforts to prevent the use of drugs, alcohol and tobacco by adolescents, and ensure that children and adolescents with gaming disorders, a gambling addiction or other forms of online addiction receive the necessary help and support.
The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health views these recommendations as important guidelines in ensuring that the fundamental and human rights of children are respected. The Ministry will thoroughly review the Committee’s recommendations and discuss what measures should be implemented based on each recommendation falling within the scope of the Ministry’s administrative branch.
Finland deems it important to have a constructive dialogue on the realisation of human rights in Finland with the UN Committees monitoring compliance with human rights treaties. However, the Ministry deems it unfortunate that the press release published by the UN Media Centre on 16 May 2023 did not fully correspond to the statements made by Finland’s delegation at the hearing. In particular, the press release included several inaccuracies on child protection in Finland that were not corrected despite Finland’s request.
- The Committee’s recommendations on the Convention (pdf)
- The Committee’s recommendations on the Optional Protocol (pdf)
- Ministry for Foreign Affairs: UN Committee on the Rights of the Child issues recommendations to Finland
Jenna Uusitalo, Legal Adviser, tel. +358 29 516 3152, [email protected]
Convention on the Rights of the Child
The UN General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in November 1989. Finland ratified the CRC in April 1991. The aim of the CRC is to promote children’s enjoyment of human rights. In the CRC, ‘child’ refers to persons under the age of 18.
The CRC includes provisions on children’s right to education, healthcare, social security and to express their views on matters affecting them according to their developmental stage. The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child monitors the implementation of the CRC. Finland submits periodic reports to the UN Committee on the implementation of the CRC.