The New York Convention on the rights of the child was adopted on 20 November 1989 and became effective on 2 September 1990. It represents the first fundamental juridical instrument aimed at protecting all children and imposes on States obligations of promotion and protection, inducing them to strengthen the existing means of protection and prompting them to work for a cultural change which focuses on all under-18 as true subjects of ratified rights. The Convention content was then completed with the approval of three optional protocols: the Optional protocol on the involvement of children in armed conflicts and the Optional protocol on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, both dated 2010, and the Optional protocol on a communications procedure dated 2011.
Every year on 20 November, date of adoption of the Convention, the International day for the rights of childhood and adolescence is celebrated.
The official languages in which the Convention – as well as the three optional protocols – is written are English, French, Spanish, Russian, Arabian and Chinese.
The Convention in Italy
The Convention in Italy became legally binding further to its ratification under Law 176 of 27 May 1991 based on which it’s obliged to adopt all the necessary measures for the implementation of the rights ratified in the Convention and to prepare a more adequate and complex protection, support and promotion system. The Italian political strategy on the rights of childhood has taken a global dimension and is supplemented by the approval of Law 451 of 23 December 1997, under which Italy has adopted adequate tools to develop an actual and organic policy for childhood and adolescence. In particular, the law sets up the Parliamentary Commission for childhood, the National observatory for childhood and the National Centre of documentation and analysis for childhood and adolescence.