geburts abc

Parental rights and children's rights

Parental custody and trusteeship

Children are human rights holders even before they are born. After their birth, they are also holders of civil rights.

Before birth
The UN Declaration of Human Rights applies fully to children. But how can they defend or assert their right to, for example, integrity? Only by adults who stand up for their children's rights. First and foremost these are the parents. They bear responsibility for their children so that they can develop well. Parents are therefore the trustees of their children's (human) rights even before birth.
For example, parents ensure a healthy diet, exercise, organise everything a baby needs when born, see a midwife or go to the doctor when they are worried about their health.
If they cannot avoid alcohol, nicotine and other addictive substances on their own, they behave responsibly when they seek medical help. This is the only way to avoid life-long damage to the child.
Children are completely dependent on their parents and specialists being aware of their responsibility.

After birth
After birth, the parents have custody of their children. This is enshrined in our constitution. Parental custody is very important. If parents cannot cope with child care, they must first be given support. This is the responsibility of the Youth Welfare Office, to which parents can turn.
First and foremost, the Youth Welfare Office has the task of supporting parents in fulfilling their duties. The "welfare of the child" is to be guaranteed. It always takes into account the basic needs of the child, which it can show with its facial expressions, gestures and voice as long as it is not yet speaking. It is parental responsibility to be sensitive to their children so that they can grow up in the best possible way.

A special situation: pregnancy conflict
The expectant mother delivers a child who possesses human rights; at the same time she herself is the holder of human rights, e.g. the right to self-determination. In Germany, it is laid down in the constitution that the woman decides whether she carries the child or not. If she decides against the child, she will not be punished. However, there is an obligation to give advice in order to weigh up her own right to self-determination against the child's right to live. Since 01.10.1995 we have had this uniform regulation of § 218 StGB in Germany. (In the former GDR the deadline solution applied since 1972, in the FRG an indication solution became law in 1976.)

At present, there are new child rights issues that have arisen as a result of obstetrics:
1. may parents be persuaded to agree to an amniotic fluid puncture, knowing that this examination endangers the life of the child? May the state allow such medical methods? And if so, under which conditions?
2. may the state allow the blood of the child to be donated in the umbilical cord and placenta to be used for the sick or for research? Because at the same time the child loses at least one third of his total blood, which has consequences for his health?
3. may Caesarean sections be performed because, for example, the parents want to prevent the child from being born on 1 April or the hospital's schedule from being adhered to?
4. May health insurance companies advertise a blood test with the aim of filtering out children who do not meet the standard in all respects?

In such cases, the child's right to life is threatened well into pregnancy. If neither parents nor specialists take this seriously and are aware of it, adults can get in the way of the child's rights and seriously violate children's rights. Only the expression of suspicious facts in the context of prenatal diagnosis can lead to severe psychological and psychosocial distortions in a partnership and consequently also in the child.
It is therefore our first priority that parents and everyone involved in the growth of children are aware of the fact that children are not the object of our actions, but the subject and endowed with their own rights. Children before birth are a "who" and not a "what".
Since the vast majority of children are healthy, it must be asked whether the constant pressure on parents to undergo PND tests is already a violation of children's rights, because even the suggestion of deviations from the norm endangers a child's life without there being any proof.
Affected parents must in any case deal with thoughts of infanticide and abortion.
Parents must know that they have the right to an untested pregnancy, they can say NO to all prenatal diagnostic measures. Parental rights are above the professional rights of doctors and midwives.