On the 2nd of September this year, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted by the Assembly in November 1989, came into force under international law, 30 days after the lodgment of the 20th instrument of ratification (by which time 31 countries had deposited ratifications). Shortly prior to that date, on 22 August, after some public controversy about the matter, Australia had determined to sign the Convention. The Convention, which stemmed from the 1979 International Year of the Child, expanded and elaborated within an international treaty, rights first enunciated (in non-binding form) in the 1959 Declaration of the Rights of the Child. It applies to a person under the age of 18.
Over 5 years ago, the Report of the Child Welfare Practice and Legislation Review Committee was published. That report - Equity and Social Justice for children families and communities, took, as one of its foundation principles, the proposition that Victorian law and practice should reflect internationally accepted principles of human and civil rights of children.