About the Child Justice Alliance

Background to the Child Justice Alliance

The Child Justice Alliance Vision

A system that:

  1. Is fair for children under the age of 18 in conflict with the law and balances their rights and responsibilities.
  2. Provides prompt assessment of children and treats them according to their best interests and individual circumstances.
  3. Is aimed at reducing crime rates through a crime prevention model that focuses on diversion and a restorative justice philosophy.
  4. Recognises that children make mistakes but can nevertheless be guided to become law-abiding adults.
  5. Respects the rights of victims and provides the opportunity for their participation.
  6. Encourages collective responsibilities between families, communities, and civil society.
  7. Is achieved through inter departmental co-operation in implementation and monitoring.
  8. Ensures the protection of society through a proportional response to crime whilst maintaining humane treatment of children committing such crimes.
  9. Recognises that the detention of children should be a measure of last resort and for the shortest possible period.
The participants
The Child Justice Alliance is a network of NGOs, CBOs, academic institutions and individuals working to ensure that the Child Justice Bill is passed by the South African parliament. Apart from a common interest in the welfare and rights of children, these people and organisations share a common vision. We would like you to join the alliance. Or you can chose to be just a friend of the alliance. These are some of the members and friends so far.

The purpose
The alliance was established to facilitate co-operation between members of civil society and other interested parties. Recognising that there are many organisations and individuals who are working in the field of children's rights and child justice, the need to co-ordinate work to prevent duplication is crucial. It is a strategic approach to advocacy that seeks to maximise the available resources by increasing the effectiveness of the efforts and activities of members.

Sharing knowledge
One of the main objectives of the alliance is to ensure that the debates about the bill are well-informed. This website has been developed to give access to a range of documents and resources. And an email network has been set up for discussions, distributing newsletters, and to respond to specific questions.

Experts
A panel of experts in the field of child justice has also been selected by the alliance and is available to respond to questions. If the information you need cannot be found on this site, please email Crystal.

The email network

What's involved in joining the alliance?
By joining the Child Justice alliance you (and/or your organisation) are simply saying that you support the "common vision" of the alliance and that you are willing to work with others to ensure that this vision is realised.

What are the benefits?
So, by joining the alliance you will automatically be added to an email network that will allow you to communicate with other members. And you will receive regular newsletters and announcements to keep you up to date on all the latest events and news. Your name, or the name of your organisation will also be added to the list of alliance members that appears on the "List of Members and Friends". No submission to parliament, or other advocacy work, will be carried out in your name without your prior approval, unless it is specifically related to the common vision.

Who can join?
The alliance is open to everyone and does not legally bind you or your organisation to anything. If, however, you work in the government sector or cannot - for some reason or other - directly support the common vision or support the Child Justice Bill campaign, you may still be able to show your support by signing up as a "Friend of the Alliance".

Where can I sign up?
If you support the Common Vision of the Alliance and would like to participate in the campaign to pass the Child Justice Bill, please fill in your details here.