Rights are a list of promises to children and young people to keep them safe. They are used to make sure you are treated fairly and looked after properly.
When something is called a right, it means that nobody can take it away from you. It is yours, and is meant to protect you and help you have a good life.
Rights for children and young people can be called different things, such as children's rights or youth rights. No matter what they're called, however, they are for both children and young people — the same rights protect you no matter which you are.
Who protects your rights?
Nearly every country in the world has agreed to make sure your rights are protected by signing up to a document called the UNCRC. The UK government has done this, and so must make sure that your rights are protected. The Scottish government must protect them, too.
Scotland has a Children and Young People's Commissioner. They are a person that makes sure that your rights are protected and respected everywhere.
The current Commissioner is Tam Baillie. He is someone who can stand up for your rights, and whose office you can get in touch with if your rights aren’t being respected. He looks after the rights of:
- everyone in Scotland under 18
- everyone in Scotland under 21 who has been looked after or in care.
What are your rights?
You have many different rights. For example:
- your best interests must always come first
- you have the right to life, survival and development
- your views must be considered and taken into account in all matters affecting you.
See a list of all your rights.