The Global Declaration on Justice With Children is a culmination of the discussions held before and during the 2021 World Congress on Justice With Children that gathered over 4,800 intergenerational participants from over 100 countries from 15-20 November 2021 through an online platform, with the theme of “Ensuring access to justice for all children: towards non-discriminatory and inclusive child justice systems”.

The World Congress was organised by the Global Initiative on Justice With Children (a consortium of Terre des hommes, Penal Reform International, the International Association of Youth and Family Judges and Magistrates, and the International Institute for the Rights of the Child) and hosted by the federal Mexican Supreme Court of Justice, with technical support from the United Nations Children’s Fund, the Office of the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General on Violence Against Children, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies; under the auspices of the Council of Europe and the European Parliament; and with pro bono support from Baker McKenzie.

The Global Declaration was drafted together by children and adults to call for action towards genuinely realising justice with children, inclusive access to justice for children without discrimination, resilient access to justice for children in the face of crises and pandemics, and child-friendly access to justice for all children in contact with the law. It highlights specific action points to be taken by states and civil society alike in partnership with children as experts and central players, which can assist us to collectively move forward towards accomplishing these important goals. These actions holistically encompass the building of frameworks, procedures, and services that are designed to address the needs of individual and marginalised children; the fostering of innovation in service delivery to ensure sustainable access to justice for children during both emergency and non-emergency contexts; and the pursuit of multidisciplinary, comprehensive, and equitable approaches in access to justice for and with children, among others.

The Global Declaration was drafted by the World Congress Consortium and its Child and Youth Advisory Group (CYAG), with inputs from the Scientific Committee, organising partners, and participants of the World Congress and its preparatory meetings. The CYAG members who co-drafted this declaration include Anas, Angela, Alexandra, Eni, Helan, Iliana, Macholi, Tajdar, and Whitney.