The rights of the child are part of human rights: rights that the EU and its Member States must respect, protect and fulfil. The Treaty on European Union establishes the objective for the EU to promote protection of the rights of the child.
The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU guarantees the protection of the rights of the child by the EU institutions and by EU countries when they implement EU law. Over the years the European Parliament has been instrumental in pushing children's rights to the core of European policies, particularly through its Intergroup on Children's Rights.
Its latest resolution, on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the UNCRC, emphasised the importance of focusing on both the external and internal aspects of children's rights across all portfolios. The plan for a comprehensive strategy on the rights of the child, including actions to protect vulnerable children, protect their rights online, foster child-friendly justice, and prevent and fight violence.
In the context of a worrying increase in the volume of child abuse material on the internet, during the July session MEPs endorsed a temporary regulation that allows web-based service providers to continue fighting child sexual abuse material online on a voluntary basis.
This legislative change was necessary to allow web service providers to continue applying voluntary measures to combat and prevent the spread of child sexual abuse content on the internet, following the full application of the EU Electronics Communications Code in December 2020. The Commission intends to propose a more permanent solution to address this problem in the course of 2021.