24 June 2019  Reports

Getting It Right: Are We Listening?

Are We Listening? reports on how well the government is implementing the Children’s Convention in relation to children’s participation rights. It is the second thematic report in the Children's Convention Monitoring Group’s Getting it Right series, following on from last year’s Getting it Right – Building Blocks, which focussed on the General Measures of Implementation of the Children’s Convention.

The report briefly discusses what children’s participation is and presents the benefits of considering children’s views in policy. It then looks at how the government is currently considering children’s views in policy development, and highlights opportunities where more can be done. Examples of some current government practice are included. The report ends with 10 ideas for strengthening children’s participation in the policy process, to ensure policies are influenced and shaped by children, consistent with their rights.

The report aims to progress current efforts focussed on collecting the voices of children to a place where decision-makers are listening and meaningfully drawing on those voices to shape policy and achieve better outcomes for children.

Are We Listening? lists 10 ideas for the New Zealand Government to action to improve children’s participation in the development of policy and legislation. These have been informed by the results of a questionnaire of government agencies and our independent insights.

  1. Show leadership and champion children’s participation
  2. Honour Te Tiriti o Waitangi
  3. Protect children’s participation rights in law
  4. Embed children’s participation rights in policy development
  5. Commit to acting on what we hear
  6. Plan and budget for children’s participation
  7. Develop, promote, and support the ongoing use of tools
  8. Develop and facilitate ongoing training
  9. Utilise expertise in children’s participation
  10. Establish a cross-government group of child rights champions