Human rights organizations in the Midwest are joining in the movement that is pressing for the U.S. Government to ratify core human rights treaties. President Obama's recent signature of the Convention on the Rights of the Disabled was a welcome indication of a more cooperative US relationship with international laws and treaties.
Among the treaties stalled in the US ratification process are conventions on the rights of women, children and the core treaty on economic, social and cultural rights. The Human Rights Program is participating in efforts to promote the Children's Rights Convention. Adopted in 1989, the CRC has become the most widely ratified international human rights treaty. The only two nations that have not ratified the treaty are the United States and Somalia. Although the US was actively involved in the 10 year drafting process, the treaty has been awaiting ratification in the Senate for 14 years.
The CRC is an important treaty in that it ensures the right to life, survival and development for every child, values which the Obama administration is in strong support of. Ratification of the CRC would allow the US to regain its position as a leader on international human rights issues and provide a framework for the improvement of child rights in the US.
This summer Midwest Coalition for Human Rights intern, Mike Brehm, has been exploring ways in which MCHR can play an active role in the campaign to ratify the CRC. He has been researching the possible implications of the CRC in the US and the jurisprudence of the Committee on the Rights of the Child. His findings will help the MCHR build a campaign and create awareness about the issues surrounding the ratification of the treaty. Mike will continue to research the CRC through the upcoming school year with hopes to publish an article about his research on the CRC.