Friday, November 20, 2009

Convention on the Rights of the Child

Twenty years ago today the Convention on the Rights of the Child was adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by the General Assembly of the United Nations.

I believe this portion is relevant to the health care debate in the United States:
Article 24

1. States Parties recognize the right of the child to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health and to facilities for the treatment of illness and rehabilitation of health. States Parties shall strive to ensure that no child is deprived of his or her right of access to such health care services.
Note the word "access" in there and think about how insurance companies govern access in this country. Strikes me as a direct violation. Perhaps this is one of many reasons for the following:
Who has not ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child and why?
The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the most widely and rapidly ratified human rights treaty in history. Only two countries, Somalia and the United States, have not ratified this celebrated agreement. Somalia is currently unable to proceed to ratification as it has no recognized government. By signing the Convention, the United States has signalled its intention to ratify—but has yet to do so.

As in many other nations, the United States undertakes an extensive examination and scrutiny of treaties before proceeding to ratify. This examination, which includes an evaluation of the degree of compliance with existing law and practice in the country at state and federal levels, can take several years—or even longer if the treaty is portrayed as being controversial or if the process is politicized. Moreover, the US Government typically will consider only one human rights treaty at a time. Currently, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women is cited as the nation's top priority among human rights treaties.

[Emphasis mine]

Hmmph. As if the United States Senate gave a damn about any form of justice not in the interest of their lobbyists.


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