• The proposal, called 25 to 25, adopted at today’s session, establishes the need to work determinedly to provide Mexican children and youth with the best conditions for their development and welfare.

• One of every three Mexicans is a child or adolescent; 40 million children and adolescents comprise this segment of the population, which is why they are such a high priority, he said.

President Enrique Peña Nieto said today that the Mexican State has an obligation to, “Ensure that all children and adolescents, no matter who they are or where they come from, have equal opportunities”.

As he led the Second Ordinary Session of the National System for the Integral Protection of Children and Adolescents (SIPINNA), the president said that, in order to fulfill this commitment, “It is essential to ensure that they can fully exercise their rights”.

“That is why we must continue working to ensure that they fully enjoy their rights. Ensuring that they do so is critical to their development and making Mexico what we have proposed: a society of rights,” he declared.

He added that all the authorities comprising the National System of Integral Protection for Children and Adolescents have made the commitment, “To prioritize a coordinated system of protection for children and adolescents”.

Today we are here, he added, “Due to the absolute, firm conviction we all have, in the various orders of government, to undertake actions and programs that will allow us to meet the goals we are setting in this session to achieve the goal of protecting our country’s children and youth”.

He recalled that one out of every three Mexicans is a child or adolescent; 40 million children and adolescents comprise this segment of the population, which is why they are such a high priority”.

President Peña Nieto said that the proposal, called 25 to 25, adopted at today’s session, establishes the need to work determinedly to provide Mexican children and youth with the best conditions for their development and welfare.

25 to 25 is a proposal that is part of a national policy instrument within the framework of the Agenda 2030: The Sustainable Development Goals. It is part of the medium-term strategic route to ensure the viability of and implement the sustainable development agenda from the perspective of children’s and adolescents’ rights.

Recalling that last year the National System for the Integral Protection of Children and Adolescents was created as an effort by Mexico to ensure equal opportunities and full development for children and adolescents, the president instructed the various orders of government and civil society to continue acting together, “In this task that requires us all to ensure that the future of children and adolescents is more promising, and therefore that the development and future of our nation is equally promising, successful and a source of  encouragement for tomorrow’s society”.

At the event, held in the Adolfo López Mateos Hall of the official residence of Los Pinos, President Peña Nieto instructed the Health Secretary to coordinate a national strategy, together with the newly formed Early Childhood Development Commission, in order to meet its objectives and expand health service coverage.

He announced that, “While it is true that we have made progress, and that from 2012 to 2015, the number of children without access to health services fell from 19.7 percent of the population to 14.7 percent in 2015, we still have a long way to go to ensure that children and adolescents have full access to the right to health”.

He also instructed the Social Development Secretary “To strengthen the actions to reverse children’s and adolescents’ social deprivation”.

He noted that a major effort is underway, which has, “Reduced the food shortages of children between the ages of 13 and 17 from just over 30 percent in 2012 to 19.6 percent in 2015”.

The president thanked the governments of the various states for their efforts for the benefit of the country’s children and adolescents.

He also acknowledged Isabel Crowley, who today participated in the National System for the Integral Protection of Children and Adolescents for the last time in her capacity as UNICEF Representative in Mexico.

Our country is very grateful for, “Having found in you a great ally, and a person close to the United Nations who accompanied Mexico’s effort to protect children and adolescents,” he said.

The president said that Mexico is not only part of the global effort to care for children and adolescents, but, “Has also been considered a country guide, in other words, a world reference due to its efforts to modify its legal scaffolding  to protect our country’s children and youth”.

Before the event, the President of the Republic met with a group of children, with whom he discussed their concerns and their hopes for when they grow up. He also toured several areas of the official residence of Los Pinos with them.

THE 25 TO 25 NATIONAL STRATEGY IS A CRITICAL PATH FOR COORDINATING THE WORK OF THE THREE ORDERS OF GOVERNMENT AND SOCIETY BASED ON CHILDREN’S HIGHEST INTERESTS: OSORIO CHONG

Interior Secretary Miguel Angel Osorio Chong declared that the Mexican state’s main commitment is to children and adolescents, “Because that is where 33 percent of our present but 100 percent of our future lies”.

 “It was with this vision that the president promoted the General Law on the Rights of Children and Adolescents, as a preferential initiative, which has given Mexico the most robust legal framework for their protection throughout our history,” he said.

He said that the 25 to 25 National Strategy, and the National Program for the Integral Protection of Children and Adolescents, “Are instruments that will be pivotal elements to continue working together for the rights of our country’s children and adolescents”.

 “It is,” he said, “a critical route for coordinating the work of the three orders of government and society, on the basis of children's highest interests. This is to ensure that each and every one of our actions clearly reflect  the priority right that the Constitution grants them”.

“We are bound by the law, but also by an ethical conviction because a nation that places the rights and welfare of children and adolescents at the center of its actions is a nation looking to the future, and taking steps now to build it. That is what 25 to 25 is about, the first national policy to guarantee the rights that Mexico has fully recognized for this population,” he explained.

IN THE PAST THREE YEARS, MEXICO HAS EXPONENTIALLY ACCELERATED EFFORTS TO ACHIEVE THE INTEGRAL PROTECTION OF CHILDREN'S RIGHTS: UNICEF:

Isabel Crowley, United Nations Fund for Children (UNICEF) Representative in Mexico, noted that in the past three years, “Mexico has exponentially accelerated its efforts to ensure the integral protection of children’s rights”.

She said that she has, “Witnessed the consolidation of a legislative framework, the result of your preferential initiative, Mr. President, who, as we can see today, is leading a great movement, a great movement in favor of the country’s children”. Now, she added, “Mexico has a National Protection System and 32 state protection systems, created to ensure the security and integral protection of the rights of all the country’s children and adolescents”.

“Mexico now has a Federal Protection Office in 29 states, which, together with the DIF system and other organizations in the system, guarantee the restitution of children’s and adolescents’ rights when they are violated”. Mexico, she continued, “Has an information system for the protection of key rights to know how many children there are, where they are, what they need and how their rights can be restored”.

Isabel Crowley congratulated Mexico, “For having assumed the commitment to being a pioneer and promoting the Global Partnership to End Violence against Children. If it obtains the expected results in prevention and attention to cases of violence, this initiative could make Mexico an international example”.

”We know there are no magical recipes, but now we have strong instruments such as the law, and innovative mechanisms for coordinating policies that prioritize, children’s highest interests and the protection of their rights,” she said.

THE 25 TO 25 INITIATIVE, THE FIRST NATIONAL PUBLIC POLICY INSTRUMENT DESIGNED TO ENFORCE THE RIGHTS MEXICO HAS RECOGNIZED FOR CHILDREN AND TEENAGERS: RUBÉN MOREIRA

Rubén Moreira Valdez, Governor of Coahuila and President of the Human Rights Commission of the National Conference of Governors (CONAGO), stressed the importance of the 25 to 25 Initiative, the first national public policy instrument, which, through proper coordination between the orders of government and public authorities, seeks to lend continuity to and guarantee the rights that Mexico has recognized for children and adolescents.

He announced that at the next CONAGO plenary session, government tasks to guarantee the human rights of children and adolescents as one of the top priorities of state leaders will be presented.

The new legislation for children and adolescents is the most important legislative step for many decades he said.

“Much has been said about the major state reforms that are transforming Mexico. I’m sure that this law is one of them, a fundamental reform to have a better Mexico in every respect,” he said.

MEXICO, COMMITTED TO BEING A PIONEERING COUNTRY IN THE GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP TO END VIOLENCE AGAINST CHILDREN: RICARDO BUCIO

Ricardo Bucio Mujica, Executive Secretary of the National System for the Integral Protection of Children and Adolescents, announced that together with four other countries and UNICEF, Mexico pledged to become a pioneer in the Global Partnership to End Violence against Children at the United Nations.

He stressed that the protection of children and adolescents has taken an important step so far this year to achieve institutionality and coordination throughout the country, by adopting a comprehensive policy and implementing joint strategies between the Intersecretarial Commission for the Prevention and Eradication of Child Labor and the Protection of Child Labor at a Legal Age.

Among the agreements approved during the Second Session of SIPINNA is the one that refers to the transformation of the Commission against Sexual Exploitation and Abuse into the Commission against All Forms of Violence Against Children and Adolescents, which will be coordinated by the National Security Commission.

Another agreement proposes the creation of an inter-institutional working group for the design of policy evaluation and budget allocation instruments, which will enforce the agreements, resolutions and recommendations of SIPINNA, which will be coordinated by the Finance Secretariat.

IT IS NO EXAGGERATION TO SAY THAT MEXICO IS EXPERIENCING A HISTORIC MOMENT TO ACHIEVE INSTITUTIONAL CHANGE THROUGH THE NATIONAL SYSTEM OF INTEGRAL PROTECTION FOR CHILDREN AND TEENAGERS: JUAN MARTÍN PÉREZ

Civil Society representative of the National System for the Integral Protection of Children and Adolescents, Juan Martín Pérez García said that organizations participate in the system “Because we believe, because we promote it but mostly because we are convinced it strengthens the rule of law in favor of children and adolescents”.

“Count on us in all the processes this involves from the design, of course, through the diagnosis, implementation, and evaluation of public policy,” he said.

He declared: “It is no exaggeration to say that Mexico is experiencing a historic moment for achieving institutional change. In this new National Protection System, which we have been installing since December, we think its achievements have been extremely significant”.

He noted that the National System for Integral Protection, “Aspires, and this is the key, this is its essence, to become a state policy that allows not only the development but the recognition and dignity of children and adolescents, regardless of their origin or condition”.