Why Does Turkey Need A Rights Based Child Policy?
Republic of Turkey is making an effort to prepare a comprehensive child centered strategy for the first time in its lifetime. Child rights policy for which the child rights proponents have been striving for since the ratification of the UN Child Rights Convention in 1995, is now on the agenda at least and is being discussed. At least, because the National Child Rights Strategy’s content as well as its development process is problematic and it is still not publicized which raises another question mark. One year ago, on April 20, 2012 Minister of Family and Social Affairs Fatma Şahin has announced that Child Rights Strategy Document which was developed as a result of several meetings and in the 1st Child Rights Congress of Turkey in 2010, has been signed by the Child Rights Monitoring and Evaluation Committee. In the Strategy Document, legal and practical measurements for the protection and dissemination of child rights are involved under the headings: culture of respect for children, child participation, civil rights and freedoms, child’s health and social security, special protection measures for the child and the family, child rights education and science, juvenile justice system, child friendly media and auditing, monitoring and evaluation system. What is more important what these headings cover and how the perception of child and child rights is shaped rather than the headings themselves. In this article, Turkish Republic’s child perspective will be evaluated and the essence of a rights based child perception and national child policy will be discussed beginning from the Strategy Document and the recent developments in Turkey.
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