UNI231370.jpg

Core Commitments

for Children

are the core UNICEF policy and framework for humanitarian action

INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY (ICT)

Commitment

Benchmarks

  • Interagency and intersectoral coordination mechanisms, including cross-border, are in place and allocate clear roles and responsibilities across sectors, without gaps nor duplications[108]

  • In situations where the Humanitarian Coordination System and Refugee Coordination Mechanism co-exist, response modalities are adapted accordingly[109]

  • UNICEF led sectors are adequately staffed and skilled at national and sub-national levels

  • UNICEF core leadership and coordination accountabilities are delivered[110]

1:  Coordination and leadership

 

Effective coordination is established with UNICEF’s participation

 

See 2.1.2 Coordination

  • Best interest procedures are in place,

  • appropriately resourced and monitored

  • All service providers have mechanisms in place to identify vulnerable children and children at risk of violence, abuse and exploitation, and refer them to case management processes which include best interest procedures

  • Personnel in direct contact with children are appropriately trained and skilled

  • Child protection authorities/actors are involved in determining the best interest of the child as part of status determination procedures

2: Best interest of the child

 

The best interest of the child guides all actions concerning children, including status determination procedures and the identification of durable solutions

  • Child-friendly reception, accommodation and care arrangements[111] are available that provide an adequate standard of living, and support families/siblings to stay together

  • Child safeguarding and child protection policies and monitoring systems are integrated in all reception centres and locations hosting children and families

  • Unaccompanied and separated children have access to alternative care options that meet minimum standards[112]

3: Reception, accommodation and care

 

Children and their families have access to safe and age-, gender- and disability-appropriate reception, accommodation and care

  • Children have timely access to information about their rights, feedback and complaints mechanisms, in a language and format that children of various ages and backgrounds can understand and use

See 2.2.7 Community engagement for behaviour and social change and 2.1.6 AAP

  • Children are enabled and supported to meaningfully participate in all decisions affecting their lives

4: Access to information and meaningful participation

 

Children have timely access to child-friendly information on their rights, available services, public health information, legal and administrative processes and durable solutions

  • In line with UNICEF’s sectoral commitments, essential services are provided to all children through supporting national planning processes and budgets; strengthening systems for service provision; and, where needed, directly providing services across all sectors

  • Referral pathways and plans to ensure continued access to services during a crisis are established  

5: Access to services

 

Children have access to essential services[113], without discrimination, regardless of their legal status

Key Considerations

Advocacy

  • Advocate for and support universal application of the CRC and its Optional Protocols for all children, regardless of their nationality, citizenship or legal status.

  • Advocate for and support universal application of legal frameworks related to refugee protection, internal displacement, migration and statelessness and of international standards relating to fair trial and the rule of law.

  • Advocate for the end of all forms of detention of refugee, stateless, asylum-seeking and migrant children on the basis of nationality, citizenship or legal status.

  • Advocate for universal birth and death registration within Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (CRVS) systems so that all children have a birth certificate, including to prevent statelessness; preparedness and response plans are in place for CRVS; CRVS systems are modernized, and data is backed up, stored off-site and interoperable with health, education and social support systems.

  • Advocate against refoulement, pushbacks, deportations and mass expulsions of migrant and displaced children and families to ensure children and their families are not returned to a country where they would face torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and other irreparable harm. During public health emergencies, these practices threaten children’s rights and health and are a risk to public health.

  • Advocate for child-specific considerations in all migration and asylum administrative and judicial proceedings, regardless of the children’s legal status.

  • Advocate for equal access to essential services for refugee, stateless and migrant children on par with national children, in line with the CRC.

  • Advocate for removal of legal, administrative, linguistic or financial barriers that prevent refugee, migrant, stateless and internally displaced children from accessing essential services. 

  • Advocate against stigmatizing refugee, migrant, stateless and internally displaced children, fuelling xenophobia, characterizing them as a threat or using criminalizing rhetoric.

  • Advocate for local and national authorities to be supported and resourced to protect and include refugee, migrant, stateless and internally displaced children.

Footnotes

[105] General Assembly Resolution A/RES/71/1, 2016.

[106] All actions concerning refugees are guided by the 1951 Refugee Convention and its protocol. The Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement outline the protections available to internally displaced people.

[107]  These frameworks include: Global Compact on Refugees; Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration;

 Global Action Plan to End Statelessness: 2014 - 2024; Guidance Note of the Secretary General: The United Nations and Statelessness.

[108] Ensure complementarities between the cluster system and other coordination models, including the Refugee Coordination Model and

the Camp Coordination Camp Management, and when necessary refer to the Joint UNHCR-OCHA note on coordination in mixed situation.

[109] Ibid.

[110] See section 2.1.2 above, overarching commitment on coordination.

[111] Community and family-based care, rather than institutionalization such as shelters, should be prioritised.

[112] UN General Assembly Resolution (A/RES/64/142), Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children.

[113] Including education, healthcare, nutrition, child protection, mental health and psychosocial support, water and sanitation, shelter, civil registration, leisure, legal aid, social protection, independent representation and guardianship for unaccompanied children.

[114] In accordance with MoUs and other strategic cooperation agreements at country, regional and global level, including with UNHCR and IOM.

[115] Refer to UNHCR (2016) Durable Solutions – Preliminary Operational Guide and IOM (2019) Reintegration Handbook – Practical guidance on the design, implementation and monitoring of reintegration assistance.

Copyright © 2020 UNICEF. All Rights Reserved.