Home > Children > First Korean Students Raise Voice for Child Rights at UN

First Korean Students Raise Voice for Child Rights at UN

Bichi Lee

Two Korean students, were one of the first in the country to present the status of Rights of Child in South Korea at the United Nations(UN). Bae Byeong-u and Kim Yoon-hee, 15 year old students from South Korea, stood as presenters at the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child in Geneva on February 10, 2011.

It was the first time Korean students participated in such a UN conference. The two students are both seniors at Gahoe Middle School in Hapcheon County, South Gyeongsang Province (Southwest of South Korea).

In their presentation it was noted that “The reason that Children’s rights in Korea are not respected is because adults do not try to pay attention to the voices of children.”

In 1991, Korea ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. As a result, every five years the Korean government has submits a report on children’s issues and the state of adolescents’ rights. To provide balance, private organizations such as Save the Children submit reports as well. Thus far, no reports have been submitted and presented by the children themselves. So when Save the Children was preparing this year’s report, it decided to include cases which abused children’s right as told by children.

Save the Children is a relief organization for international children. Kim No-Bo, the president of Save the Children stated “The conference is held to evaluate Korea’s child and adolescent rights. This report is significant because it is one of the first where children are given the opportunity to present their opinion in their own voice at the conference. It is an essential part to realize the right to participate of child.”

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