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Print this pageChild Rights and the Private Sector




Child Rights International Network

Resource type:

Publication (general)

*Read: CRIN Newsletter 17: Child Rights and the Private Sector*

The private sector refers to the for-profit sector. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) means a company tries in some way to ensure its activities and practices are ethically sound. This might be by exceeding expectations and minimum regulations in the protection and promotion of international human rights, labour and environmental standards.

In relation to child rights, this can mean anything from a child-focused initiative organised by a company to get more local children into education, to retracting a policy which affects the lives of children negatively. For example, the scandal over certain companies encouraging mothers to favour infant formula over breast milk for their babies.

CSR is often patchy or inconsistent, since it is a voluntary initiative for which the real incentive may merely be good publicity. Moreover, many companies fail to engage at all in CSR.

The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre has a specific thematic page on how children are influenced by the private sector which can be accessed here.

There is a separate issues factsheet on child labour which can be accessed here.

Issues in respect of child rights and the private sector include, but are not limited to:

The Private Sector and the Convention on the Rights of the Child

Article 3 of the CRC relates to the best interests of the child and says that in both public and private sectors, the best interests of the child should be the primary consideration. There is also article 32 on child labour.

The Committee on the Rights of the Child devoted its 2002 day of general discussion (in September 2002) to the theme of "The Private Sector as Service Provider and its Role in Implementing Child Rights." Present at the day of general discussion were representatives of United Nations organs, bodies and specialised agencies, as well as other competent bodies, including non-governmental organisations, research and academic organisations and individual experts, to contribute to the discussion.

For more information, read:
The documents submitted for the day of general discussion.

Read about the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the issue of transnational corporations and other business enterprises.

Read a report for the Special Representative on state responsibilities to regulate corporate activities under the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Previous Publication (general) items

Organisation Contact Details:

Child Rights International Network
East Studio
2 Pontypool Place
Tel: +44 (0)207 401 2257

Last updated 10/04/2008 08:02:29

Please note that these reports are hosted by CRIN as a resource for Child Rights campaigners, researchers and other interested parties. Unless otherwise stated, they are not the work of CRIN and their inclusion in our database does not necessarily signify endorsement or agreement with their content by CRIN.

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