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Kingdom Taskforce for Childrens Rights

Together for Children's Rights in the Kingdom

The countries and public entities of the Dutch Kingdom want all children in the Kingdom to grow up healthy and live in a safe and promising environment. A memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was, therefore signed to strengthen seven elements of cooperation on Children’s Rights. Te seven key elements of cooperation are; positive parenting, prevention of child abuse, development of 'safetynets', youth participation, professional assistance and support of children and families, with special attention for vulnerable children. The MoU follows after a letter of intent was signed by 7 political authorities earlier this year, during the third conference of the Kingdom Taskforce for Children's Rights in Curaçao.

Six UNICEF reports entitled "Children of the Kingdom: Children's Rights in the Kingdom of the Netherlands" published in 2013 convincingly showed that urgent additional measures are needed to improve Children's Rights in the Caribbean parts of the Dutch Kingdom. 

During the Kingdom Conference of April 2nd, 2014 in Aruba, the political authorities confirmed that every child in the Kingdom is entitled to a good youth, as envisaged by the International Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). The conference decided to establish the Kingdom Taskforce for Children's Rights, with the aim to stimulate cooperation regarding Children’s Rights in the Kingdom.

In a follow up action during the conference of the Kingdom Taskforce for Children's Rights, which took place from May 14th through May 16th 2018 in Curaçao, the administrators responsible for youth and family of the four countries and the three public entities in the Kingdom, signed a Letter of Intent, with the aim to strengthen cooperation regarding Children's Rights at the administrative level as well. This has led to the MoU that is made public today, on the International Day of the Rights of the Child.

The MoU describes the responsibilities that all parties have separately to strengthen compliance with the International Convention on the Rights of the Child in their respective countries and islands. The document also describes the seven key elements regarding administrative cooperation, highlighting in particular the sharing of expertise. 

The MoU is linked to concrete action plans of the individual islands and the work plan of the Kingdom Taskforce for Children's Rights. The action plans are evaluated and updated annually. The actions in the action plans give substance to the key elements included in the MoU.

With the signing of the MoU, the role of the Kingdom Taskforce for Children's Rights is strengthened and in this way all islands and countries will take an important step towards result-oriented cooperation on Children’s Rights within the Kingdom.

For more information, please contact:
Government of St. Maarten
Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth & Sport
Mrs. Shermina Powell-Richardson
Facebook page: St. Maarten Youth Affairs

The Island Government of Saba 
Mr. Krijn Pons

St. Eustatius Government
Mrs. Dirkje de Jong