As a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), Australia is obligated to achieve minimum standards across justice, education, healthcare and social services.
Additionally, South Australia’s Children and Young People (Oversight and Advocacy Bodies) Act 2016 states that all government authorities must seek to give effect to the UNCRC.
Every five years, the Australian Government reports to the UNCRC Committee to explain how Australia is fulfilling its obligations in relation to child rights. In response to Australia’s fifth and sixth periodic reports, the Committee highlighted key areas of concern and made recommendations to ensure governments at both the Federal and State levels fulfil their obligations under the Convention.
In 2021, the Commissioner released the annual suite of Child Rights Progress Reports to coincide with International Human Rights Day. In these reports, the Commissioner notes the impact of COVID-19 on child and youth services, but is pleased with some progress being made in child protection, child justice and child health.