• Millions of children have no access to education, work long hours under hazardous conditions, are forced to serve as soldiers in armed conflict, or languish in institutions or detention centers where they endure inhumane conditions and assaults on their dignity. Young and immature, they are often easily exploited. In many cases, they are abused by the very individuals responsible for their care. We are working to help protect children around the world, so they can grow into adults.
  • Students stand in the doorway of a classroom at Maiduguri Experimental School, a school attacked by the armed Islamist group Boko Haram, in Maiduguri, Nigeria on May 12, 2012.
    Schools and universities, as well as students, teachers, and academics are intentionally targeted for attack in conflicts worldwide, the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack said in a 250-page study released today. “Education Under Attack 2014” identifies 70 countries where attacks occurred between 2009 and 2013, including 30 where there was a pattern of deliberate attacks (see map).

Reports

Children's Rights

  • 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 10, 2014
    Every year, the state of Florida arbitrarily and unfairly prosecutes hundreds of children as adults, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. If convicted, these children suffer the lifelong consequences of an adult felony record for what are often low-level, nonviolent offenses.
  • Apr 10, 2014
  • Apr 8, 2014
    France detains as many as 500 children who arrive in the country alone each year in transit zones at the borders, where they are denied the protection and due process rights afforded other unaccompanied children on French territory. Any unaccompanied child who arrives in France should be admitted to the country and provided with shelter and care while their immigration claims are decided.
  • Apr 2, 2014
  • Apr 1, 2014
  • Mar 28, 2014
  • Mar 28, 2014
    The Tanzanian government should allow children access to secondary school regardless of their final primary school exam results, Human Rights Watch and the Tanzania Child Rights Forum said today in a letter to the education minister.
  • Mar 25, 2014
    Maoist insurgents and government security forces in India should respect children’s safety and right to education by keeping schools off-limits in the weeks before the April and May 2014 national elections, Human Rights Watch said today. The Maoists, also known as “Naxalites,” should cease all attacks on schools. Government security forces should not occupy schools as barracks or bases, which puts children at risk.
  • Mar 25, 2014
    The United States should end the practice of sentencing people convicted of crimes committed before age 18 to life in prison without parole, Human Rights Watch said today in an amicus brief filed in a case before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.