Declaration of the Asia-Pacific Television Forum on Children and Youth

The Asia-Pacific Television Forum on Children and Youth in Seoul, Republic of Korea, February 2001, brought together over 120 high-level television professionals to discuss the media's critical role in promoting and protecting the rights of children. Representatives of public and private broadcasters, satellite and cable networks, and regional television associations presented and discussed innovative programming ideas and advocacy campaigns.

The Forum was the first follow-up meeting in the region to the Asian Summit on Child Rights and the Media held in Manila in 1996. The Declaration was presented to the 3rd World Summit on Media for Children in Greece in March, 2001, and was shared with governments at the Fifth Ministerial Consultation in Beijing in May, 2001.


 

We, some 100 members of the broadcasting community, have gathered in Seoul, Republic of Korea, from 5-7 February 2001 for the Asia-Pacific Television Forum on Children and Youth. We particularly welcome the first-ever participation in a regional television gathering by several Pacific Island nations and look forward to even stronger participation from the Pacific in the future. Over the course of this three-day Television Forum we have focussed on a variety of issues related to the production of high quality and relevant news, educational and entertainment programming for and about children and youth.

We are fully aware that under the internationally accepted Children's Television Charter (addendum I), which has been reaffirmed in this region by the Asian Declaration on Child Rights and the Media (addendum II), the television industry committed itself to producing programming for and about children that respects and upholds the rights enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

As stated in the Television Charter, we recognize and accept our "obligation to entertain, inform, engage and enlighten" children and youth in accordance with the principles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

In view of the Global Movement for Children and the September 2001 UN Special Session on Children that will lay the foundation of a new development agenda for children, we recognize that much more work needs to be done to promote and fully protect the rights of children and youth and fulfil our obligation to them.

Therefore, we hereby call upon the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) and Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA), their member broadcasters and all regional and national broadcast organizations, to:

1. Make the Television Charter and Asian Media Declaration the standard used by broadcasters to measure and evaluate their record in providing high quality and relevant television programming for, about and by children and youth.

2. Establish mechanisms in partnership with regional broadcast associations to disseminate information on "best practices" that will serve to promote the production of high quality and relevant programming for, about and by children and youth. This can be carried out by providing space on web sites, in newsletters or at regular annual meetings to discuss best practices in children and youth programming and to explore additional ways such programming can help to promote children's rights.

3. Recognize exceptional efforts by Asia-Pacific broadcasters to uphold and promote the rights of children and youth by establishing a special ABU-CASBAA "UNICEF" annual award in the area of news, education and entertainment programming.

4. Work toward the establishment of a regional/national television fund, supported by the private sector as part of its contribution to the Global Movement for Children, that would be used to facilitate the development of production capacity for innovative and developmentally appropriate programming for, about and by children and youth.

5. Support efforts to facilitate the production of high quality and relevant programming for children and youth, such as the ABU's Working Party for Children.

6. Request and encourage government/public service broadcasters to allocate both additional resources and air time for high quality and relevant programming for, about and by children and youth, including entertainment and educational programming.

7. Encourage the building of stronger partnerships between the region's broadcasters and development organizations in promoting, publicizing and forwarding the Global Movement for Children, the outcome of the UN Special Session on Children, the new development agenda for children and all other efforts aimed at securing and protecting the rights of children and youth to survival, protection, development, participation and a healthy and sustainable environment.

8. Use the occasion of the annual International Children's Day of Broadcasting to promote and publicize the Global Movement for Children and the new development agenda and encourage the regular participation of children and youth in the production of television programming for, about and by them.

7 February 2001, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Dela