The majority of Europe’s stateless kids were born in Europe; many of them would not remain stateless today if all European countries had in place legal safeguards against childhood statelessness as required by international law. The shocking reality is that more than half the countries in Europe are failing to meet these obligations, thereby denying a nationality to thousands of children across the continent.
We urge all European states to:
- Accede to the UN 1954 Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons and the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness;
- Address gaps in their laws and practice in order to implement comprehensive safeguards to identify and grant nationality to children born on their territory who would otherwise be stateless, as soon as possible after birth;
- Ensure access to free and universal birth registration in order to prevent statelessness.
No child should be left without nationality. It is a problem that is entirely solvable. UN conventions provide a clear legal framework to define and tackle the issue. By establishing safeguards in nationality laws to ensure that any child born on the territory of a country will be entitled to nationality if they would otherwise be left stateless, we could end childhood statelessness within a generation!
For more information, see: Help Us End Childhood Statelessness in Europe