In 18 months, leaders from around the world will gather to sign a “Pact for the Future” and commit to a new vision to address emerging challenges, including those posed by new technologies. As part of this process, a Global Digital Compact will set out how States and other stakeholders will ensure an “open, free and secure digital future for all”.
Building a digital environment which is safe for children and respects their rights is fundamental to delivering on this aim.
How to do this is already set out in the 2021 General comment No. 25 to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The Global Digital Compact must recognise and build on the General comment No. 25, driving its implementation. A priority should be ensuring States hold businesses accountable for respecting children’s rights, by design and default.
This is the main demand of a 15 strong coalition of international networks of children’s organisations, coordinated by the 5Rights Foundation, in a joint position submitted to the United Nations last week.
5Rights also provided an individual contribution setting out how a global standard for children’s data protection based on the Age Appropriate Design Code, and specific requirements for algorithmic oversight.
The UN Global Digital Compact is the opportunity to drive awareness and reinforce the global commitment to implementing children’s existing rights as set out in the UNCRC and its General comments in the digital world and ensure it delivers its promise of a better world for all that is safe and rights-respecting for children.