What is the Status of the CRC?
The CRC entered into force in 1990 with ratification and acceptance by 20 countries. Since then, a total of 193 countries have accepted the CRC and are participating actively in implementing its provisions. It now is the most universally accepted treaty ever adopted in the history of the world. In the 21 years since its entry into force, none of the 193 nations have withdrawn from its coverage, and judges in most countries, including members of the United States Supreme Court, have recognized the common standards it established as universal law.
Two optional protocols to the CRC have been adopted to make its standards more explicit in two areas: children in armed conflict and trafficking in children. Both of these protocols are implemented in the same way as the CRC itself but apply only to the countries that have ratified the protocols. The agreement establishing these protocols allowed the US Government to ratify them without ratifying the CRC itself. The US ratified both Protocols in 2003, and has been reporting on them to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child since then.