24 Oct 2006

THE Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People, Barney McNeany yesterday updated the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights on key issues facing children.

The Commissioner was making his presentation during a committee session at which all of the UK’s commissioners had the opportunity to discuss how children and young people’s rights and best interests can be safeguarded.

The presentation was a key opportunity for NICCY to explain to Parliamentarians the range of problems and issues facing our young people,” he said.

“The joint committee has an important role in advising parliament on Human Rights issues and all 4 UK Children’s Commissioners welcome their interest in children and young people’s rights”.

“We told the committee of our work with Government and public bodies which we believe have led to improvements in the way children and young people are treated, the services they receive and make sure their voice is heard in decisions that affect their lives.

“We informed the committee of those areas where we feel children’s rights are not fully respected in Northern Ireland.”

Mr McNeany said that NICCY was dealing day and daily with important issues that impact on children and young people.

“At NICCY we have been tackling areas such as mental health provision for children and young people, speech and language therapy and keeping them safe.

“I will be making sure that children and young people are not seen as mini-human beings with mini-human rights and that they are afforded the care they deserve, the services they are entitled to, and have a say in the decisions that affect their lives.”