Brazil has made concrete its commitment to the principles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in the creation of a number of State Programmes of Action. This ‘decentralised’ strategy marks an unprecedented step in a country with a strong tradition of ‘top-down’ federal thinking and limited experience of participatory planning.
The ‘Plan Of Action’ adopted at the 1990 World Summit for Children recognised the importance of grass-roots initiatives for children at the provincial level. In many countries, this call for ‘decentralisation’ has triggered the beginnings of an entirely novel process. In Spain, a general trend toward the provincial and the participatory had already begun.
The birth of the Mongolian NPA took place within the context of the profound economic transition that accompanied the collapse of the Soviet Union. In spite of the difficulties imposed by this widely-felt upheaval, Mongolia has succeeded in laying the foundations for a successful NPA.
Though the relationships between ethnic minorities and dominant societies are multi-faceted and complex, the interrelated but distinct dimensions of marginalization and discrimination provide a useful framework for studying minority groups. Poor children the world over are vulnerable to abuses and violence, exploitation and human rights violations. When, in addition, they belong to disadvantaged minorities, their plight warrants special attention and requires special policies.
The basic facts about the secular decline of infant mortality in Europe have been known for nearly a century. Regristration series show that the levels of infant mortality in the late nineteenth century were still extremely high and could vary quite markedly from one country to another, ranging from about 100 per 1,000 live births in Norway and Sweden to 200 or even 250 per 1,000 in countries such as Germany, Austria and Russia. At the turn of the century, however, infant mortality began to fall almost right across the continent.The countries reviewed in this publication are Sweden, England, France and Austria.