For organisations including the council, have sign up to the United
Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.
The Next Generation is a key project in Bolton's Vision for the Future
and youth services into the next millennium.
The document is based on the UN Convention and incorporates all its
principles. It states what children can and should expect in their lives and includes having the right to be safe from harm, neglect,
intimidation and exploitation; access to legal representation when they are alleged to have committed an offence and the right to express their views and have them given due weight by those responsible for making decisions.
Twenty schoolchildren and representatives from Wigan and Bolton Health
Authority; Bolton Community Healthcare Trust; Bolton Hospitals Trust;
Bolton Council; Greater Manchester Probation Service; Bolton Bury TEC;
NCH Action for Children; Homestart; The Children's Society; Barnardos
and Bully Free Zone will sign a scroll committing them to the Next
Generation document. Each child will also get a yo-yo.
A questionnaire is also being distributed asking for children's views
about what they do after school and how they feel their rights may be
affected. The information used will be fed into the Next Generation
Bob Howarth, leader of Bolton MBC, said he was delighted
the council had adopted the principles of the Convention.
'We believe that the rights of Bolton's children and young people are
important. And we are pledging to respect these rights and endeavouring to reflect the principles of the UN convention in all our work as a council.
'We believe that this is the way forward to creating a better society;
that children whose rights are respected will learn to respect other
people's rights and develop greater responsibility as they grow up,
after all in a free society responsibility goes with rights,' he added.