In a written submission to the Day of General Discussion on Environment at the Committee on the Rights of the Child (the Committee), CIEL urges the Committee to articulate the right of the child to a healthy environment as implied in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
The Committee’s articulation of the Right of a Child to a Healthy Environment, as implied in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, would clarify State responsibilities to prevent, and protect against, environmental harms that impact children’s rights. An implied recognition of the right to a healthy environment also would: (i) secure greater protection to children; (ii) recognize inter-linkages between protected rights and the environment; and (iii) identify preconditions necessary for fulfillment of all rights guaranteed under the Convention.
This written submission first explores why and how human rights law bodies have articulated implied rights. The submission then provides examples of implied rights in human rights jurisprudence. Next, the submission analyzes the links between a healthy environment and children’s enjoyment of their Convention rights. This body of work shows that the recognition by the Committee of the right of the child to a healthy environment would be a highly significant step in the Committee’s efforts to strengthen the system of protection for children’s rights.