• Nov 18, 2014
    On Nov. 20 25 years ago, the United Nations adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child, but we still aren’t doing enough to protect the youngest among us.
  • Oct 17, 2014
    Russia's policies on foreign adoptions made headlines when the government announced it would no longer allow Americans to adopt Russian children. But hidden away in Russian orphanages are thousands of children with disabilities who aren't orphans, whose harmful treatment has long been hidden from public view -- even from most Russians.
  • Oct 17, 2014
    They’re going to need an extra-big stage in Oslo this year. When Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai pick up their Nobel Peace Prizes, there are going to be a lot of other winners standing alongside them. About 2.2 billion, in fact.
  • Oct 13, 2014
    More than a decade ago, I accompanied Kailash Satyarthi on one of his rescues. It was dusk when we drove into a dusty village in eastern Uttar Pradesh and made our way into a carpet factory, which was really a mud hut with some looms.
  • Oct 10, 2014
    When I visited the small-scale — or “galamsey” — gold mines in the Ashanti Region earlier this year, I met “Kwame,” a quiet but self-assured 12-year-old. He dropped out of primary school about a year ago to help his mother feed his five younger siblings.
  • Oct 6, 2014
  • Oct 3, 2014
    President Obama has the clout to get child soldiers off the battlefields in countries around the world. But he has been too reluctant to use it. As the fiscal year ended on Sept. 30, he gave some countries a pass to get U.S. military aid—in some cases millions of dollars – that he should have held back until they change their ways.
  • Sep 17, 2014
    I was sitting in a café in northern Russia making phone calls to nearby government orphanages when the woman behind the counter asked what I was doing. I explained that I was researching conditions for children with disabilities living in state institutions.
  • Sep 17, 2014
    The Obama administration has made curbing nicotine use by kids a public health priority, with efforts including mass media campaigns to reduce teen smoking and a proposed ban on selling e-cigarettes to minors. But when it comes to the serious health risks run by thousands of children who work each summer on tobacco farms in the United States, the administration has been conspicuously silent.
  • Sep 12, 2014
    The morning roll call will be a particularly morbid affair on the first day of school in Gaza this Sunday. Hundreds of students, killed in the recent fighting, will be forever marked absent.
  • Sep 9, 2014
    Yazidi refugees in Iraqi Kurdistan now sleep in classrooms, hallways, and the courtyards of facilities intended for children’s education. What happens when school starts?
  • Sep 5, 2014
    A controversial new law in Bolivia makes it the first country in the world to legalize work by 10-year-olds. One justification offered by officials sounded awfully familiar: “Kids want to work.”
  • Sep 2, 2014
    The American public became aware of tens of thousands of Central American children at the US-Mexico border after photos of kids jammed into overcrowded detention centers went viral. With fits and starts, the US has made some headway in moving most of these children into foster care and other appropriate accommodations while the courts sort out whether they should be allowed to stay or be sent home.
  • Sep 2, 2014
    Does the National Council for Peace and Order's (NCPO) "return happiness" campaign hold a place for children who languish in Thailand's immigration detention centres?
  • Aug 15, 2014
    “My head started hurting really bad, and I started seeing like all black.” It was mid-afternoon on a scorching summer day in eastern North Carolina when “Jimena,” a 14-year-old farmworker, walked into a tobacco field where she had been sent to work. No one told her that the field had been sprayed with pesticides just hours earlier. “I got really dizzy,” she said, “and I started throwing up.” She told me she was sick for two weeks.
  • Aug 14, 2014
    The humanitarian crisis of undocumented Central American children may have faded from the headlines, but the problem has not gone away.
  • Jul 22, 2014
  • Jul 17, 2014
  • Jul 9, 2014
    It was an impressive, yet surprising, accomplishment. On July 12, 2011, with Germany’s then-Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle sitting in the president’s chair, the UN Security Council voted unanimously in support of a groundbreaking resolution that required the UN Secretary-General to report annually on armed forces that used schools for military purposes during times of war in contravention of the international laws of war.
  • Jun 24, 2014
    There's no reliable evidence that putting families who enter the US illegally into detention centers actually deters unauthorized immigration. But there's plenty of evidence that it can cause children in those families severe harm – from anxiety and depression, to long-term cognitive damage. That's one big reason that family detention for immigration violations is banned under international law.
  • Jun 24, 2014
    When Human Rights Watch first saw Yemi, the 17-year-old boy was huddled on a concrete bench in the corner of a windowless, graffitied holding cell run by the French border police. Clad in a stiff new leather jacket but otherwise without clothing warm enough to face Paris in January, Yemi had been in the cell for nine hours.
  • Jun 12, 2014
    Many multinational companies now ban children from working in their operations, but child labor is still a central issue for them. In the globalized economy, products have long and complex supply chains, often reaching down to a multitude of small, local producers. Companies may source from businesses that use child labor without knowing – unless they take steps to ask the question.
  • May 28, 2014
  • May 14, 2014
    Grace, whose name has been changed to protect her privacy, doesn't smoke – at 15, she's too young to buy a pack of cigarettes, anyway – but she might as well have had a regular habit. At her job on a tobacco farm last summer, she handled tobacco plants for up to 12 hours a day, steadily absorbing nicotine through her skin.
  • May 13, 2014
    Last Saturday, Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda opened Education Week at Jamhuri stadium in Dodoma, setting off a national debate about the state of schooling in Tanzania. The week’s theme is “Quality education for all is possible”, and it is part of the government’s Big Results Now initiative, which aims to improve education and boost economic development.
  • May 9, 2014
    Mother’s Day can be particularly devastating for parents of migrant children.
  • May 7, 2014
  • May 6, 2014
    Hundreds of parents have been marching with placards demanding “Find our Daughters” in Nigeria, where over 200 girls were abducted by an Islamist armed group in late April. Many schools had been shut down because of repeated attacks by Boko Haram, whose name means “Western education is forbidden.” In a cruel twist of fate, the school where the girls were abducted had been reopened only so that they could take their final exams.
  • May 2, 2014
    Last month, Britain's shadow development secretary, Jim Murphy, promised to put human rights at the heart of Labour's approach to development. While many welcomed his statement, others have responded more negatively, expressing scepticism about the meaning and advantages of "doing development from a rights perspective". I believe the critics are mistaken.
  • Apr 30, 2014
  • Apr 28, 2014
    Many people in Lebanon reacted with outrage after YouTube footage surfaced in March showing a man in an office beating three children on the soles of their feet with a wooden stick. Media outlets later identified the man as Moussa Daher, principal of the Makassed School in the village of Daiat al-Arab in southern Lebanon. In the video, Moussa is heard saying to one of the children, “Every time you put your feet down I will beat you more.” The children are crying and pleading for him to stop.
  • Apr 22, 2014
    Over 40 percent of India’s children drop out of school before finishing 8th grade, despite a recent law designed to provide free and compulsory elementary education for all. Most students who quit school are from the lowest rungs of Indian society. A new Human Rights Watch report, “They Say We’re Dirty,” shows that discrimination by teachers and school officials fail to provide a welcoming and child-friendly school environment for these children. India researcher Jayshree Bajoria talks with Amy Braunschweiger about the consequences of persistent discrimination and what needs to change to keep these kids in school.
  • Apr 10, 2014
    Last month I stood in a room at Roissy Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris, talking to a scared refugee boy and sharing a box of cookies. Abid was alone in France, without a parent or a guardian. But was he really in France? I was on French soil. But according to the French government, Abid, 16, was not in the same country as I. And under that Kafkaesque legal fiction, they kept him locked up at the airport.
  • Apr 9, 2014
  • Mar 20, 2014
  • Mar 4, 2014
    There is growing recognition that military use of schools should be curbed to prevent further harm to students, teachers and educational facilities – writes Zama Coursen-Neff
  • Feb 14, 2014
    Mercury poisoning is affecting lives of children working in gold mining.
  • Jan 27, 2014
    President Vladimir Putin's widely reported statement to a group of volunteers in Sochi on January 17 that "gay sex is not a crime in Russia, so gay people can feel calm, at ease, but leave children in peace, please" was highly offensive.
  • Jan 13, 2014
    "It could have been anyone in this courtroom. Your mother. Your lawyer. It could have been me." The judge drilled down on the random murder of a woman for her car. Edel Gonzalez, a diminutive 38-year-old man, sat shackled in a prison jumpsuit before the bench and nodded in agreement. "It was brutal," the judge repeated with force.