Thailand: Respect children’s right to raise their voices without fear of harassment

Thursday 27 August 2020

27th August 2020, Bangkok - Save the Children urges all actors in Thailand to respect the rights of young people, including children, to express their opinions and take part in peaceful demonstrations. Children should be able to raise their voices without fear of repercussion, a human right that is enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Thailand has seen growing youth-led demonstration since July this year, which have spread to at least 55 provinces across the country. Many of the demonstrations have been organized by university students who call for constitutional reforms, including at a gathering of some 20,000 people in Bangkok on 16 August.

While those attending demonstrations have mostly been young people over the age of 18, many children have also taken part. Over the past weeks, protests have furthermore taken place at some high schools across the country, including during weekly flag-raising ceremonies.

Save the Children welcomes the Ministry of Education’s announcement on 19 August 2020 that schools in Thailand should allow students to protest on campuses.

Schools should be safe places where students are able express their opinions and take part in constructive discussions about issues that affect their lives and their futures. States also have a duty to uphold children’s right to meaningfully participate and share their own perspectives on issues that are relevant to them. The rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly are enshrined in the CRC, which Thailand has been a state party to since 1992.

All actors in Thailand must ensure that everyone that takes part in demonstrations, including children, are safe and secure. Children are among the most vulnerable groups in any society, and their physical and mental well-being must be protected at all times, whether at home, at school or at a demonstration. Intimidation and other harassment against children are unacceptable in any circumstances.

 

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For media enquires contact Bank Chitsuksai, Communications Media and Campaign Coordinator, Save the Children Thailand on +66863630552 or bank.chitsuksai@savethechildren.org