The report “Child and youth participation in
Finland – A Council of Europe policy review” provides a comprehensive
analysis of the implementation in Finland of the right of children to
participate in decisions affecting them.
Taking as a starting point a the
child’s right to be heard, as set out in Article 12 of the United Nations
Convention on the Rights of the Child, the report undertakes a legal and
policy analysis of child and youth participation in Finland and assesses how
child participation functions in different settings: the family, alternative
care, health care, education, recreation and cultural life, in situations of
violence, judicial and administrative proceedings, and public life and civil
society. As the review highlights, legal obligations for child and youth
participation are well in place in Finland and significant achievements have
been made in promoting the child’s right to be heard. However, improvements
can be made by encouraging more bottom-up participatory initiatives,
strengthening the involvement of young children and of children from
disadvantaged backgrounds, investing in the training of professionals
working with children and making sure that wherever possible children are
consulted at the beginning of decision-making processes.
Children and young
people themselves played an important role in the drafting of this report.
In addition to an online survey in which more than 700 children
participated, the report reflects the outcomes of the discussions of
children’s focus groups and the input from a children’s reflection group,
which was involved in the whole process leading to this report.
Download the publication here
publication is available in English only. It is not for sale.