Joint Statement from the high-level round table on the role of Regional Organizations on the Protection of Children from Violence (2011)

11/10/2011

We, the representatives of the Council of Europe, the League of Arab States, MERCOSUR Pro-Tempore Chairmanship of the Permanent Commission of the Initiative Nin@Sur, the South Asia Initiative to End Violence Against Children (SAIEVAC), and the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child participating, with UNICEF, in the first held meeting of Regional Organizations and Institutions on Violence against Children, organized by the Special Representative of the Secretary General on Violence against Children (SRSG on VAC),

Gathered in New York to share lessons learned and reflect on good practices and priority areas of concern resulting from the regional processes promoted in our respective regions to implement the recommendations of the United Nations Study on Violence against Children,

Recognizing the critical role played by Regional Organizations and Institutions as catalysts of progress, at the regional and national levels, for the prevention and elimination of violence against children,

Recognizing the priority attached by the SRSG on VAC to the consolidation of partnerships with Regional Organizations and Institutions to accelerate progress in the process of implementation of the recommendations of the UN Study on Violence against Children,

Welcoming the support of the SRSG on VAC to the strengthening of regional governance structures and initiatives, and to cross-regional and South-South cooperation to promote and monitor progress in the follow-up to the UN Study on Violence against Children,

Noting with appreciation the important role played by civil society in support of the process of follow-up to the UN Study on Violence against Children,

Express our determination to accelerate efforts for the prevention and elimination of violence against children in all its forms and to promote cross-regional and South-South cooperation, in particular with a view to supporting:

 

a)      The development of well-coordinated and well-resourced national agendas on violence against children, supplied with effective implementation and monitoring mechanisms;

b)      The development of national legislation to prohibit all forms of violence against children in all settings;

c)      The consolidation of national data systems and research on violence against children and the dissemination of relevant information to inform advocacy, policy making and resource mobilization to safeguard children’s right to freedom from violence.

We recognize the richness and potential of cross-regional and South-South cooperation and in close cooperation with the SRSG on VAC and with the support of UNICEF, commit to:

a)      Promote the sharing of experiences, good practices and lessons learned on the process of implementation of the UN Study on Violence against Children;

b)      Support initiatives to enable cross-fertilization of regional experiences, good practices and lessons learned;

c)      Support the development of a platform, under the auspices of the SRSG on VAC, for knowledge-sharing on regional efforts to protect children from violence and to ensure easy access to relevant information on measures and processes promoted at the regional level to prevent and eliminate violence against children in all settings;

d)     Promote cooperation with key stakeholders, including independent institutions on the rights of the child, parliamentarians, civil society, including children, religious leaders, the private sector and the media to strengthen children’s protection from violence;

e)      Support initiatives to build a culture of respect for children’s rights and freedom of violence; and in this regard, strengthen partnerships with the media;

f)       Meet on a regular basis and support the SRSG on VAC mandate and global efforts to effectively prevent and address violence against children.

New York, 11 October 2011