With Somalia now set to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), the U.S. will soon once again be one of only two countries that have not ratified the CRC. Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud made the announcement last Wednesday, November 20, 2013, Universal Children’s Day and the 24th anniversary of the CRC. The CRC is a legally binding human rights treaty that recognizes children’s right to survival, to develop to the fullest potential, to protection from abuse, neglect, and exploitation, and to participate in family, cultural, and social life. In the countries that have ratified it, the CRC serves as a framework to change public policy, laws, and programs to improve the lives of children. Currently, the U.S. is joined by South Sudan and Somalia as the only countries that have not ratified the CRC.

Prior to July 9, 2011, the U.S. and Somalia were the only countries to not have ratified the CRC because South Sudan was not yet a country. South Sudan gained independence on July 9, 2011 after decades of civil war that exacerbated drought and famine and led to a terrible humanitarian disaster that lasted through the 1990s and into the early […]

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