SRSG Santos Pais calls for the setting-up of national independent Ombuds or Commissioners for children’s rights to advance implementation of the 2030 Agenda


SRSG Santos Pais participated as the keynote speaker at an event at United Nations headquarters organized by the Permanent Missions of Norway and Chile, and in collaboration with UNICEF, on Strong Child Rights Monitoring.

Ms. Santos Pais highlighted the key role played by Ombuds for children across regions as critical partners in the realization of children’s rights and as independent and influential voices, determined to safeguard the best interests of the child in policy, law and practice. 

The establishment of Ombuds for children is a core dimension of the implementation of the recommendations of the UN Study on Violence against Children and the SRSG remains strongly committed to continuing to support states in this endeavor.

SRSG Santos Pais welcomes growing ratification of the Optional Protocol on a communications procedure


SRSG Santos Pais warmly welcomes the ratification by a growing number of countries of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on a communications procedure. 36 countries have now ratified or acceded to the Optional Protocol, and 51 have signed it.

“Since the Optional Protocol entered into force in 2014, the ratification process has gathered momentum,” said SRSG Santos Pais. “Over the course of this year alone, Brazil, Croatia, Cyprus, Liechtenstein, Panama, Paraguay and Switzerland have all become Parties to the Optional Protocol, demonstrating the growing support enjoyed by this important child rights treaty.”

SRSG Santos Pais welcomes launch of academic Global Report 2017 Ending Violence in Childhood


The launch of the new Global Report 2017 Ending Violence in Childhood, issued on September 26 by the international learning initiative Know Violence in Childhood is an important contribution to our understanding of the scale and impact of violence in childhood based on a critical review of research and data from across regions. We welcome the launch of this important academic report and are confident it will help to stimulate further research and action to help ensure all children grow up free from violence and enjoy a genuine opportunity to develop to their full potential.

Annual report to the General Assembly - 2017


Pursuant to General Assembly resolution 71/177, the present annual report of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Violence against Children provides an overview of major initiatives and developments to sustain and scale up efforts to safeguard children’s freedom from violence, including information on field missions and regional initiatives, and on progress achieved and the challenges remaining to protect children from all forms of violence. The report builds upon the process of implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its target to end all forms of violence against children.

Leadership and accountability are essential to reach the ambitious vision of the 2030 Agenda to build a world free from fear and violence for every child


Stepping up progress towards the 2030 SDG targets on violence against children must be at the heart of the policy agenda of every nation is a central message in the 2017 Annual Report of SRSG Santos Pais to the General Assembly. “Leadership and accountability are essential to realize the ambitious vision of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda for a world free from fear and violence, a world that invests in children and where no child is left behind. The world confronts the greatest wave of child migrants and refugees since the Second World War, with its attendant risks of neglect, harassment, ill treatment and exploitation. Violence infuses the daily life of these children, and fear and insecurity are widespread. As the Global Compacts on Refugees and Migration begin to take shape, safeguarding the rights of children on the move is ever more pressing.

SRSG welcomes commitment to tackle impunity for witchcraft related human rights violations and to children's protection from violence


To strengthen children's protection from violence and prevent associated risks, the Office of the Special Representative co-organized an international workshop in Geneva with the Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism, in collaboration with the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women, the Witchcraft and Human Rights Information Network and Lancaster University.

States' representatives, alongside UN experts, academics and civil society organizations shared important experiences to raise awareness and enhance multi-stakeholder action to prevent and address witchcraft and related violence and harmful practices, building on and consolidating critical work done on this issue across regions.

SRSG Santos Pais highlights importance of children as agents of change in session to honour the legacy of Janus Korczak

SRSG Santos Pais joined the 8th International Janus Korczak Child Rights Congress in Warsaw as keynote speaker on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the last road of Janusz Korczak and children from the Orphans Home in Warsaw. 
The session was hosted by the University Maria Grzegorzewska in cooperation with the Office of the Ombudsman for Children in Poland, and brought together child rights experts and academia from around the world.
Ms. Santos Pais praised the vision of Mr. Korczak for inspiring the international community to count on children as a resource and agents of change. 

SRSG-VAC office joins high level panel on implementation of national policies to end violence against children


New York, 19 September - The office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Violence against Children joined a ministerial level panel discussion on ending violence against children organized by the Governments of Maldives, Estonia and Nigeria during the high level segment of the United Nations General Assembly.

“We commend the Governments of Maldives, Estonia and Nigeria for recognizing violence against children as a priority in their policy agenda and for hosting this important meeting during the high-level week of the General Assembly,” said the representative of the SRSG office at the event.

The meeting provided an important platform to share lessons from the process of implementation of national policies and programs to enhance the protection of children from violence.

SRSG calls for steady investment in early childhood to promote the Culture of Peace and Non-Violence


To promote the implementation of the Declaration and Programme of Action on a Culture of Peace, the President of the General Assembly hosted a High Level Forum “Sowing the Seeds of the Culture of Peace: Early Childhood Development is the Beginning”, at UN Headquarters, New York.

In her remarks to the Forum, SRSG Santos Pais highlighted that investment in early childhood is crucial both to ensure children's development and to build peaceful and inclusive societies around the world. "Early childhood is where everything starts and it is also where investment can achieve the highest returns.”

Special Representative welcomes new Zanzibar Plan of Action to End Violence Against Women and Children


Special Representative Santos Pais welcomes the launch of the New Zanzibar Plan of Action to End Violence Against Women and Children, 2017-2022. The National Plan builds on the country's initial response to the findings of the Violence Against Children data survey carried out in 2009 to advance implementation of the recommendations made by the UN Study on Violence against Children. It represents the culmination of a very comprehensive process of consultation and collaboration between government, UN agencies, development partners, NGOs and civil society stakeholders in developing a strategic framework that provides an overall vision and costed set of agreed actions to address violence against women and children in Zanzibar.