CLM held a Roundtable discussion on the 17th November 2014 in the area of Social Welfare Law focusing on the Social Welfare Code in the context of children's rights. The ensuing discussion highlighted certain legislative provisions and child related payments that are not providing adequate protection for children's rights particularly when examined in the context of a human rights framework.
The Roundtable was attended by various Advocacy Officers, public interest consultants and members of the wider legal community. Colin Smith BL and Saoirse Brady, Research and Projects Officer of the Children’s Rights Alliance presented on different aspects of this topic. Colin Smith BL outlined how domestic and international human rights law could be used to challenge various provisions or child related payments. Saoirse Brady examined certain provisions in the social welfare code that could be viewed as failing to protect the best interests of children and highlighted some of the issues related to child related payments.
Attendees were of the view that the definitions used in the current social welfare legislation need to be updated and widened in order to better protect the rights of children and agreed that the issue of inconsistency in the interpretation of legislation is a significant problem. Work is continuing on this issue.