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It wasn’t until the early 1800s that children’s rights were societally acknowledged with the enactment of laws preventing child labour. The next milestone was the creation by the League of Nations of a committee for the protection of children. Soon after followed the Geneva declaration, the first international treaty on children’s rights. Some decades later, in 1953, Unicef was founded and gathered momentum on the basis of a yaws eradication campaign before launching the Declaration on the rights of children (1959) followed by the most widely cited article of them all, the 1989 convention. So, humankind has come some way but, the pieces I have selected show how far we still have to go.
There a few issues in public health with as complex a background as folic acid supplementation. The 1991 Medical Research Council trial showed, convincingly, that supplementation reduces the incidence of neural tube defects. Uptake is patchy. Unlike some 80 other countries in which fortification of flour is recommended it is not mandatory in the UK. In a dissection of …
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