Taiwan's Ministry of Health and Welfare published the country's first report on the rights of the child Thursday in tandem with the start of a two-day conference in Taipei on a United Nations convention that seeks to offer special care and assistance to children.
The initial report lists and explains the measures Taiwan has taken to recognize children's rights and the progress made on the adoption of such rights, in accordance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child that was adopted by Taiwan two years ago.
In its eight chapters, the report covers the general principles of the convention -- civil rights and freedoms; family environment and alternative care; basic health and welfare; education, leisure and cultural activities; and special protection measures.
It was complied with the help of various government agencies, experts, academics and civic groups, after 33 meetings, and was drafted in 2015, the health and welfare ministry said.
A panel of five international child rights experts will be formed to review Taiwan's initial report on child rights and will publish their conclusions in 2017, which the government will take into consideration to further enhance protection of child rights in the country, according to the ministry.
The release of the report two years after Taiwan's adoption of the UN convention is in line with the terms of the Implementation Act of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which was introduced in November 2014.
Meanwhile, the two-day conference was held to raise awareness of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and discussed child rights protection in several countries, issues mentioned in national reports and reviews by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, and other matters relating to child rights.
Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Lu Pau-ching, who also serves as executive secretary of the Cabinet's Welfare and Rights of Children and Youth Promoting Group, addressed the opening of the conference at the Civil Service Development Institute in Taipei, speaking mainly about the release of the Taiwan report.
Other speeches and discussions at the conference focused on challenges in the area of child rights protection in Taiwan, with participants that included international experts, local civic groups, academics and government officials in the fields of social service, immigration, legal affairs, crime prevention and public education.
Among the child rights experts invited to speak at the conference were Professor Jaap E. Doek of the Netherlands, who served as chairperson of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child from 2001-2007; Sanphasit Koompraphant, founder of the Centre for the Protection of Children's Rights in Thailand; Professor Trond Waage, a former Ombudsman for Children of Norway; and Meas Samnang, secretary general of
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel