Prof Paula Gerber (Monash) kindly recorded a video introducing and summarising our research recently published in the Human Rights Law Review. We hope you find it interesting.
Is the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child Doing Enough?
Professor Paula Gerber and I recently published an empirical analysis of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child (‘CRC’) and their relationship with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues in the Human Rights Law Review. Specifically, we examined the CRC’s primary outputs, including its Concluding Observations for the last ten years (2010-2020), all the CRC’s General Comments to date and Views from Individual Communications. This involved an analysis of over 1500 records.
The final article is available at https://doi.org/10.1093/hrlr/ngab012. However, the pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in the Human Rights Law Review following peer review is available below.
In brief, several of our findings suggest that the CRC has become more sensitive to many of the issues facing LGBT children and children with same-sex parents. Quantitatively, the attention the CRC has given to LGBT issues has increased. The terminology used by the CRC also reflected greater inclusiveness over time.
However, our research found that there are several areas for improvement. In particular, it is recommended that the CRC avoid bundling LGBT children and children with same-sex parents
with a long list of other groups of vulnerable children in its Concluding Observations. The CRC should also take a more consistent approach to the consideration of State Parties anti-discrimination legislation and whether it adequate to protect the interests of LGBT children and children with same-sex parents. It is also recommended that the CRC pay closer attention to the Alternative Reports filed by non-government organisations when raising concerns regarding the violation of the rights of LGBT children and children in same-sex families. Concerning the CRC’s General Comments, it is recommended that the CRC publish a General Comment on issues facing LGBT children and children with same-sex parents.
With greater engagement and monitoring of human rights violations against LGBT children and children with same-sex parents, it is hoped that the CRC could continue its important and valuable work in helping to break down negative stereotypes these children face to prevent and minimise harms during the child’s development.
Paula Gerber and Aaron Timoshanko, ‘Is the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child Doing Enough to Protect the Rights of LGBT Children and Children with Same-Sex Parents?’  (ngab012) Human Rights Law Review
Children often face discrimination, bullying and even violence because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, as do children raised by parents who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT). This article considers what the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child is doing to protect the rights of LGBT children and children with LGBT parents. To make such an assessment, this article critically analyses the Committee’s Concluding Observations over a ten-year period, its General Comments and its Views on Individual Communications. The conclusion reached is that while the Committee has made encouraging progress in recent years when it comes to addressing LGBT related issues, there is still room for improvement in the way the Committee seeks to protect children from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced version of an article accepted for publication in the Human Rights Law Review following peer review. The version of record is available online at: https://doi.org/10.1093/hrlr/ngab012.