Children’s rights in Kosovo must not exist only on paper

Source: ChildPact and  Coalition of NGOs for Child Protection from Kosovo

Press release

ChildPact (Regional Coalition for Child Protection) and the Coalition of NGOs for Child Protection from Kosovo (KOMF) launch cross comparison study between the Child Protection Index results and the European Union’s progress report for Kosovo, highlighting a number of actions that Kosovo must take to enhance its capability of protecting the rights of the children.

EU’s Progress Report and the Child Protection Index both highlight that actual implementation of Kosovo’s legal framework on child rights should be a key government priority.

 

Key issues:

  • Kosovo’s legal framework on child rights needs adjustments in order to be fully compliant with Kosovo’s UNCRC (UN convention on the rights of the child) commitments and EU requirements
  • However, the main issue at this stage is the large gap between policy and implementation: it is important to have the right legal framework in place, but it must not exist only on paper
  • Appropriate budget resources should be dedicated to ensuring that the rights of all of Kosovo’s children are protected, in line with international best practices
  • EU’s Progress Report and the Child Protection Index both highlight that actual implementation of Kosovo’s legal framework on child rights should be a key government priority.

Kosovo has walked a long way towards achieving the principles set by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), but much remains to be done. The EU Progress Report for Kosovo and the results of the Child Protection Index (CPI) provide an excellent opportunity to compare and deepen the child protection recommendations regarding the further enhancement of Kosovo’s child protection environment. Both documents highlight similar issues, and include recommendations on how to deal with them. The report proposes a cross-comparison that follows the outline of the EU Progress Report on child-related issues as it intersects with those indicators of the CPI where Kosovo scored a negative result (score 0 – thus not complying at all with envisaged standards).

Kosovo must include strong financial investment to build adequate capacity to close the gap between legislation and implementation. Kosovo has to build a plan for sustainable and fair financing of social services through the establishment of grants. Kosovo has to create consistent, independent monitoring and inspection mechanisms to review the quality of service provision. Research and data collection should be prioritised to determine the prevalence of different issues in Kosovo.

Kosovo still has to put more efforts in tackling child trafficking and child labour issues, in enabling a more effective coordination among authorities involved in protecting the rights of minors, in providing better care for children with disabilities and in collecting relevant data and monitoring the effectiveness of child protection measures.

The Child Protection Index in Kosovo

The Child Protection Index is an instrument created jointly by World Vision and ChildPact that measures a country’s child protection system against a common set of indicators. The Index is based on the prescriptions of a set of articles from the UNCRC as well as on the principles of a systems approach to child protection. The results from each country illustrate the government’s actions towards child protection through the lens of policy, service delivery, capacity, accountability and coordination. The Child Protection Index has been piloted in 9 countries through the work of more than 70 experts involved in data collection and analysis, the use of more than 600 indicators, and the issue of more than 100 policy recommendations. In Kosovo, the Child Protection Index has been implemented by the Coalition of NGOs for Child Protection – KOMF.

The recently cross-comparison study between the EU Progress Report and the Child Protection Index  “Kosovo: EU Progress Report and CPI highlight key weaknesses in the child protection system” includes information on how other countries in the region introduced key reforms in areas where Kosovo’s current policies do not comply with the UNCRC.

You can download the paper here.

You can download the Child Protection Index report here.