There are 1.4 million children in prison right now around the world with devastating effects on their lives


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“The first time I entered a juvenile prison in Latin America, I was shocked how many of the kids were waiting months and months to see a judge. Most have no hope of being released for years. When they are finally released, they go back to their communities with no support system. Lagging behind in school with no work skills, they have few options. Locking up kids for petty offenses actually makes crime worse in the long run as lives are needlessly thrown away… “

In 2013, Douglas Keillor is a human rights attorney. In 2012, Douglas moved to Mexico City as a Fulbright-Garcia Robles Fellow to research juvenile detention. In 2013, he founded Juvenile Justice Advocates International.

Latest News


A mother’s tireless struggle

Rocío gets up very early every morning to prepare for her two jobs. She cleans the houses of wealthy people, who sometimes give her clothes, purses, or shoes that they no longer use. Rocío sells these items in a street market to have an extra income. She requires a double income because she needs to […]


United, even through the distance

Silvia is going through a very difficult time. Three of her children are living behind bars. Her two eldest sons are in an adult’s prison in the state of Chihuahua, and her youngest boy, Miguel, is in a juvenile detention facility in that same state. Silvia lives very far from both prisons, in a neighboring […]


Mental health of every child in detention must be guaranteed so they can successfully reintegrate into society. The state must aid youth who go through its detention centers with positive, developmentally appropriate care. Recently, the dangerous situation unraveling inside the Department of Correction and Rehabilitation (DCR) of Puerto Rico came to our attention, where several […]

From the Library

Children in Pretrial Detention

This is the first international report, surveying 118 countries, dedicated to understanding how long children spend in pretrial detention.

Reducing Length of Child Pretrial Detention

Watch our live webinar from May 20th, 2019 on starting a global movement to reduce the time children spend in pretrial detention.