Best interests of the child
“In all actions concerning children, whether undertaken by public or private social
welfare institutions, courts of law, administrative authorities or legislative bodies,
the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration.”[United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1989, Art. 3]
This meansthat governmental bodies, NGOs and other actors concerned, including
in certain cases, the media,should place the most importance on the needs of the
child when taking actions concerning a child, or making decisions affecting him/her.
This does not mean that other considerations cannot be taken into account, but
they should not prevail over the interests of the child. It can also sometimes appear that the rights and interests of the child are contradictory. In such cases, it is ne-
cessary to balance these competing demands so that the decisions made support the most positive outcome for the child.