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Are We There Yet?: the Impact of the Lisbon Treaty on the EU Children's Rights Agenda

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The EU's Lisbon Treaty presents the most important opportunity for the development of children's rights since the EU's existence. This article sets out the broader constitutional changes made that are of relevance to children and the implications of changes to the legislative procedure, including a discussion on whether the new Citizens' Initiative might be exploited as a lobbying tool for specific children's rights issues and its relation to the right of children to participate. The impact of the EU's enhanced fundamental rights agenda on children's rights is assessed, including the Charter of Fundamental Rights, the General Principles of EU Law and the ECHR. In addition, the Lisbon Treaty presents new opportunities for integrating children's rights into all stages of the decision-making and implementation process. It also provides sharper tools to develop adequate non-legislative responses to the diverse range of needs that children have, such as policy, budgetary and research initiatives.

Affiliations: 1: European Children's Rights Unit, School of Law and Social Justice, University of Liverpool;, Email:; 2: European Children's Rights Unit, School of Law and Social Justice, University of Liverpool


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