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DCI and Juvenile Justice

DCI believes that no child belongs behind bars. The deprivation of liberty should be used only as the very last resort in dealing with children in conflict with the law.

During its International General Assembly in 2008, DCI reaffirmed its longstanding commitment to juvenile justice as its priority issue at the international level.

The overall goal of DCI’s international strategic plan on juvenile justice is:

“To make the situation of juvenile justice known internationally, promoting actions that aim to include juvenile justice as a priority item on political agendas at the international, regional and national level; and, to strengthen juvenile justice systems, guaranteeing the rights of children in conflict with the law”

DCI’s work addresses a number of aspects of juvenile justice systems, including for example:

  • The prevention of delinquency and attention to the root causes that bring children in conflict with the law
  • Promotion of diversion and the use of alternatives to detention
  • The training and professional development of actors in the justice system
  • The monitoring and improvement of conditions of detention
  • The right to education in places of detention
  • The rehabilitation and reinsertion of children in conflict with the law

DCI uses a number of strategies to promote and defend the rights of children in juvenile justice, including: Advocacy and lobby; Direct intervention; Monitoring and reporting; Research and documentation; Training and capacity building; Networking and information sharing.

Specifically, the International Secretariat is currently undertaking the following activities:

  • International advocacy for children’s rights in juvenile justice
  • Technical support and capacity building with national sections