11th European Forum on the rights of the child: Children deprived of their liberty and alternatives to detention

The European Forum on the rights of the child is an annual conference organised by the European Commission. It gathers key actors from EU Member States (as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and the Western Balkans), international organisations, NGOs, Ombudspersons for children, practitioners, academics and EU institutions to promote good practice on the rights of the child.
Albert Borschette Conference Centre, Rue Froissart 36, B-1040 Brussels




The 11th European Forum on the rights of the child took place on 7 and 8 November 2017.

In the context of the forthcoming UN Global study on children deprived of liberty, and in follow-up to the 12 April 2017 Communication on the protection of children in migration, the 2017 Forum was dedicated to the topic of children deprived of their liberty and alternatives to detention.

A side event on pathways and vulnerabilities of children who are affected by deprivation of liberty (their own or that of their parents) took place on 6 and 7 November.  The two events brought together, over three days, 316 participants from all EU Member States as well as Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and the Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia).

The organisers would like to thank all participants for their active engagement and in particular the 70 or so speaker who generously shared their expertise and experience. We are especially grateful to the young people who accepted to share their very personal experience of deprivation of liberty, conveying powerful messages to policy-makers and practitioners. 

Photos and videos from the Forum:

  • Video testimonies by Ellen Maloney, Pinar Aksu and Dylan Moore on their experience of deprivation of liberty
  • Video message from Rebecca Mulhare

Please consult the Forum key documents:


Time passes differently for children. See a child's perception of time by Maximilian Kiener.


6.11.2017 - the side event day 1


7.11.2017 - the side event day 2


7.11.2017 - the Forum day 1


8.11.2017 - the Forum day 2, morning plenary session, parallel session 1 and closing plenary session


8.11.2017 - the Forum day 2, parallel session 2


8.11.2017 - the Forum day 2, parallel session 3


8.11.2017 - the Forum day 2, parallel session 4



Useful links

Other relevant documents

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