Letter: Children: how many rights?

Sir: Rosalind Miles is right to draw attention to the ways in which children's rights are overlooked by adults, but she errs in stating that Britain has not yet ratified the UN convention on the Rights of the Child, which we did in December 1991. Britain also signed the Declaration of the 1990 World Summit for children, which does not require ratification, but could do with more in the way of implementation.

Ms Miles was clearly concentrating on the situation of children in this country, but in signing both the convention and the declaration, the British government made pledges to children both at home and abroad.

The commitments made to the children of the Third World require increases in the aid budget, and switching more resources towards basic human needs, particularly nutrition, primary health care and primary education. Aid as a proportion of GNP has continued to decline since 1990, and though there has been some improvement in the proportion spent on basic human needs, it is hardly enough to keep the promises that Margaret Thatcher made on our behalf.

Yours faithfully,


London NI2