Stop making children criminals

CRIN wants to encourage a debate on juvenile justice which gets beyond pragmatism and compromise. In particular, we want to provoke a new debate about the setting of minimum ages of criminal responsibility. We support those who believe the way forward is to separate the concept of responsibility from that of criminalisation – and stop criminalising children.

We want to work with other organisations and human rights advocates to encourage States to design systems which keep children out of the criminal justice system altogether, systems which renounce retribution and focus exclusively on children's rehabilitation, always with necessary attention to public safety and security.

Join CRIN's debate on how to stop making children criminals

CRIN's stop making children criminals paper is an inadequate beginning to what we hope will become a constructive and influential debate, reaching beyond proposals to move the minimum age of criminal responsibility up or down by a year or two.

CRIN aims to promote policy discussions and if your organisation would like to be involved, please email us.

CRIN welcomes:

  • comments on this paper
  • information about:
    • relevant positive developments in State’s laws and policies.
    • research demonstrating the damage done by criminalising children.
    • ideas for further regional and international advocacy.

​Further information: