ExpiredChildren’s Rights and the UNCRC: Beyond the Voice of the Child

  • May 20, 2021
    3:30 pm - 5:00 pm


Justice Freya Kristjanson, Superior Court of Justice

Caterina Tempesta, Senior Counsel, Office of the Children’s Lawyer

Anamika Baijnath, MSW, RSW, Senior Policy Analyst, Ontario Association of Social Workers

It has been 30 years since Canada ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), the most widely ratified international human rights treaty in history.  Many of its core principles are applicable in the family law context, and compel us to shift our approach to providing services to children and families, viewing children as rights-holders and not merely passive subjects of decision-making.  Our panelists will:

  • review key aspects of the UNCRC and its status in Canadian law;
  • focusing on the child’s right to freely express views, discuss ways to promote children’s meaningful participation in family law matters;
  • discuss other aspects of family law that engage children’s rights, such as issues of privacy and consent;
  • suggest how family justice participants can usefully approach challenging family law cases by applying a children’s rights lens;
  • explore how professionals working with children can build a child-centred, rights- based practice, and empower children and youth to participate in decisions about their lives and their care arrangements; and
  • offer practical suggestions for counsel on how to use the UNCRC as an effective advocacy tool


This program contains 15 minutes of Professionalism Content and one hour and fifteen minutes of Substantive Content.


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