Refugee and asylum-seeking Children: Australia’s obligations under International Law


Thursday, 5th May, 2022


This event has concluded

This is the second in this year’s child rights webinar series aimed at developing greater knowledge and understanding of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). In its Concluding Observations on Australia’s reports, the UN CRC Committee made a series of recommendations about the protection of refugee and asylum-seeker children. The webinar will examine Australia’s obligations as a party to the CRC, and the need to address the detention of children, their mental health, discrimination, the provision of services, and support for civil society organisations working for the welfare of children.

Professor Mary Crock will engage with the shortcomings identified by the UN CRC Committee and the requirements for action by all levels of government, taking account of the essential child rights principle of the best interest of the child. She will highlight the need to heed children’s views and aspirations in all areas that affect them.

Rasika Jayasurya will outline issues of immigration detention and trafficking, both areas addressed in the Concluding Observations, from a global perspective at UNICEF. She will touch on the ways other governments have ensured the rights of children of migrants and refugees, and comment on the UN Special Procedures statement on Australians detained in Syria.

NOTE: At least half an hour will be allocated for questions and answers, and comments


Professor Mary Crock, Sydney Centre for International Law, University of Sydney Law School was awarded the inaugural NEDA Medal by the National Ethnic Disability Alliance, and in 2016 she was given the Affinity Intercultural Foundation Award for Contributions to Social Justice and Human Rights.

Rasika Jayasuriya, Migration Policy Specialist, UNICEF, Geneva has worked at the UN Migration Network secretariat, IOM Sri Lanka, and the Office of Multicultural Affairs and Citizenship at the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet.


Dr Noam Peleg, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Law and Justice, UNSW, Book Review Editor, The International Journal of Children's Rights.

Associate Professor Faith Gordon, Deputy Associate Dean of Research, ANU College of Law, The Australian National University and Director of the International Youth Justice Network.

Webinar Recording

Links and resources

Presentation by Rasika Jayasurya, Migration Policy Specialist, UNICEF, at the 14th CRC Webinar, in conjunction with Youth Law Australia and Australian Lawyers for Human Rights.
Summaries of significant reports and cases 2019-2022.  The Child Rights Convention: Asylum, refugees and children in situations of migration. 14th CRC Webinar, in conjunction with Youth Law Australia and Australian Lawyers for Human Rights.

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