Child Pornography Ruling Reflected Concerns of Children's Health Organization

January 29, 2001



OTTAWA, ON - The Canadian Institute of Child Health today reacted to the recent "possession of child pornography" ruling by the Supreme Court.


"We are pleased to see that legislation prohibiting production and dissemination of child pornography has been unanimously upheld by the Court, but we remain concerned that personal possession continues as an adult right. As in the past, we consider that personal possession demonstrates disrespect to the rights of children" stated Dawn Walker, Executive Director of CICH. "Children's rights must be safeguarded and the child must be given the utmost priority. We strongly urge legislators to provide a place for the consideration of the childrenís rights and best interests over that of freedom of expression for adults when the two come into conflict."


The principles underlined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child of which Canada is a co-signatory nation, states that "...In all actions concerning children... courts of law, administrative authorities or legislative bodies, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration."(1 ) The Convention continues to explain that "...Parties take all appropriate measures to prevent... the exploitative use of children in pornographic performances and materials."(2)


The Canadian Institute of Child Health is a national charitable organization who promotes the health and well-being of all children and youth in Canada. Areas of focus include injury prevention, maternal health, child sexual abuse prevention, environmental contaminants, and monitoring to obtain child and youth statistics.


(1) United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 3 (1).
(2) United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 34 (c).


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