Commissioner for Children and Young People, Patricia Lewsley was among Ombudspersons for children from the G8 countries, who are calling on global leaders to urgently address the effect of the financial crisis and climate change on children.
Ms Lewsley said their message to global leaders is clear: the situation is critical, the opportunity to act is now.
The Commissioner, speaking on behalf of the UK Children’s Commissioners and Ombudspersons across the G8 countries said: “As we speak children are dying and their futures are seriously compromised because of inaction.
“We are speaking on behalf of the world’s children, as well as G8 children. As independent promoters and protectors of the rights of children we believe that the leaders have the opportunity to make not only a statement, but real change in children’s lives.”
The Ombudspersons calls for action are:
- Invest in childhood. This is our duty and moral imperative to fulfil the rights of children globally. Resources allocated now will have immediate and long term benefits to society and the economy. Such investment will result in national and global social benefits.
- Within the course of the G8 leaders administration children will become voters and they will vote for their futures. Address climate change now through increased resources and promoting behaviour that will cause change to happen, and mitigate the worsening effects of climate change
- The world is interconnected more than ever. The G8 must maintain and increase their commitment to aid and invest in the future of all children.
- Establish, increase, maintain and reinforce the offices of ombudspersons in more countries and regions. They are the bridge builders and conduit for action and accountability.
NOTES TO EDITORS
- This is the first year the O8 group of Ombudspersons has met in the run-up to the G8 summit. As the global issues become potentially more devastating for more and more children the members thought it pertinent to support the work of J8, the Junior ‘8’ Summit, the annual forum where young people from around the world meet to share their concerns and make recommendations on how to address global issues with G8 leaders and the world community.