The rights of the child and Family Reunification
2022 Annual Day on the Rights of the Child at the Human Rights Council   

Wednesday, 9 March, Morning panel: 10am-12pm/Afternoon Panel: 4-6pm 

Every year, the Human Rights Council dedicates a full day to discuss a specific children’s rights theme. This year, the Annual full-day meeting on the rights of the child will focus on the theme: The rights of the child and Family Reunification. 

The annual full-day meeting on the rights of the child will identify the implications of a child rights approach to family reunification, especially to prevent the separation of children from their families, and to children affected in cross-border situations. The event will be an opportunity to:

  • Assess the legal, policy, and other causes of family separation, with a view to its prevention and to supporting family reunification.
  • Assess the gaps and barriers to realizing the rights of the child in situations where children have been separated from their families, paying particular attention to children who are marginalized and /or discriminated against.
  • Clarify the pathways through which the rights of the child can be achieved for those who have been separated from their families, in particular through strengthened family reunification procedures and the requisite international cooperation.
  • Analyze the implications of applying child rights principles to family reunification policies and procedures, particularly children’s right to have their best interest taken as a priority, the right to non-discrimination, and the right to be heard and have their views taken into account.

Join us in raising awareness about this important event and follow it via UN Web TV! Feel free to use our Social Media Pack (available here) to spread the word about the 2022 Annual Day!

Morning panel 10am-12pm (Geneva Time): “Family reunification in the context of migration”   

Chair: H.E. Mr. Tamim M. Baiou, Vice-President of the Human Rights Council

Opening remarks: Ms. Michelle Bachelet, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights 


  • Eduardo, Child advocate
  • Mr. Felipe González Morales, Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants
  • Mr. Luis Ernesto Pedernera Reyna, Member of the Committee on the Rights of the Child
  • Ms. Daniela Reale, Global Lead on Refugee, Migrant and Displaced Children, Save the Children 

Afternoon panel 4-6pm (Geneva Time): “Family reunification in the context of armed conflict and counter-terrorism” 

Chair: H.E. Mr. Federico Villegas, President of the Human Rights Council 

Video screening prepared by UNICEF


  • Ms. Virginia Gamba, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict
  • Mr. Cornelius Williams, Associate Director of Child Protection, United Nations Children’s Fund 
  • Ms. Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism
  • Ms. Helen Durham, Director of International Law and Policy, International Committee of the Red Cross

This event will be an opportunity for children, States, international organizations, civil society organizations and other participants to identify and share concrete commitments to prevent family separation and support family reunification. 

For more information, please check the concept note here.