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Department of Child Law hosts successful international symposium on children deprived of liberty

On Friday 13 April 2018, the Department of Child Law of Leiden University was proud to host the international symposium 'Deprivation of Liberty of Children in The Justice System – Towards A Global Research Agenda', organised by Prof. Dr. Ton Liefaard and Dr. Yannick van den Brink.

The Department of Child Law had the honour of welcoming close to one hundred participants from all over the world in the ‘Klein Auditorium’ at the Leiden University Academy Building. The aim of the international symposium was to exchange research and knowledge on the issue  of deprivation of liberty of children in the justice system and to develop a interdisciplinary research agenda that can be supportive to the United Nations Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty and to governments in implementing international children’s rights standards.

After opening words from vice dean Prof. Dr. Larissa van den Herik, Ms. Valerie Wagner of the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Prof. Dr. Ton Liefaard, chair of the symposium, four keynote speakers shed light on the issue of deprivation of liberty of children in the justice system. Prof. Dr. Ursula Kilkelly reflected on the global challenges regarding implementing children’s rights standards in juvenile justice systems and Prof. Dr. Ann Skelton, member of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, provided a UN Committee’s perspective on deprivation of liberty of children in the justice system. Moreover, Dr. Yannick van den Brink presented his recently published studies on pre-trial detention in the Dutch juvenile justice system and Mr. Bart Lubow shared his extensive experience in juvenile detention reform in the United States.

In the afternoon session, a multidisciplinary expert panel, consisting of H.E. Dr. Seree Nonthasoot, Dr. Wendy O'Brien, Prof. Dr. Philip Jaffé, Dr. Stephanie Rap, and Dr. Rasmus Wandall, reflected on specific topics related to the UN Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty. The symposium concluded with a keynote address delivered by Dr. Helmut Sax, key researcher in the UN Global Study, in which he presented the draft outline and timeline of the UN Global Study and explored ways in which academia can contribute to the Global Study.

The Department of Child Law looks back on a successful event and wants to especially thank Melissa Mohd Akhir, Wandile Madalane, Debby Naztty Pratiwi, Katia Klein and Arjan de Vries, all students in the Advanced LL.M. in International Children’s Rights or the LL.M. in Dutch Child Law, for their help in organising the symposium.

Symposium booklet: Deprivation of Liberty of Children in the Justice System 

The symposium was sponsored by the Leiden University Fund / Dr. H.A. van Beuningen Fonds.

The speakers at the symposium
The symposium organising committee
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