Skip to main content
Scottish government logo

Everybody has rights, including children. But what are children’s rights and how can we as parents and carers help support them?

Jump to a section in this article

What are children's rights?

Rights make sure we’re all treated fairly and can reach our full potential. Children have additional rights to adults. This is because children need extra protection and don’t have the independence adults do.

As a parent, carer or family member, it’s up to us to speak up for our children and make sure their rights are being met. We do this every day, even when we don’t know it. For example when you ask a teacher to provide extra help for your child at school or when you chase up a medical appointment for your child.

These rights are set out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). This is an internationally agreed document that recognises the importance of children’s rights and freedoms and always puts the best interests of the child first. Scotland is the first UK nation to incorporate the UNCRC into law!

The UNCRC isn’t an additional ask or something to give you more to do. Nor does it mean your child can do whatever they want whenever they want! It provides you with the language to support your child whether at school, the doctors or anywhere else.

Back to top

Download the children's rights booklet

Back to top

You can read our case studies to see how the UNCRC can help children and parents deal with different situations.

Back to top