Children's rights a priority in only 5 parties' election programs
Dutch politicians are not focused enough on children's rights, according to Defense for Children. Of the 13 main political parties in the Netherlands, only five "express the ambition to improve the situation of vulnerable children," the organization said, ANP reports.
The children's rights organization examined the political parties' election campaigns on subjects like poverty, youth care, education, juvenile justice, migration, development cooperation, sexual exploitation, and discrimination.
ChristenUnie, PvdA, GroenLinks, animal party PvdD, and D66 were the only parties to pay proper attention to these subjects. These five parties take the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and other such treaties seriously "and translate these into concrete investments in children's rights," Defense for Children director Mirjam Blaak said. "Other political parties almost ignored the 3.5 million children in our country."
According to Defense for Children, children who grow up in a low-income family are more likely to be in poor health, have lower-than-average school grades, and are at greater risk of abuse and neglect. "It is therefore striking that with poverty, not many parties talk specifically about policy for children." Party programs mainly focus on tackling parents' income and debts, while families still have their drinking water cut off or get evicted because they cannot pay the rent or utility bills, the organization said. PvdA, GroenLinks, and ChristenUnie have concrete plans to ban this.
Almost all parties see the need to improve youth care and said they'd reserve extra budget for this, Defense for Children said. VVD, D66, DENK, GroenLinks, PvdD, and PVV said that children in need of youth aid should get tailor-made assistance and not just end up on a waiting list.