Human Rights Council Side Event: Ending Child Detention

The impact and need for alternatives to the detention of refugee, asylum-seeker and migrant children continues to gain international attention.

The latest side-event held at the 26th Session of the UN Human Rights Coucil presented a number of good-practice examples from states around the world who are exploring and implementing child-sensitive alternatives to detention (ATD).

This side event was held with generous sponsorship of the Permanent Missions of Italy and Mexico.

Distinguished panelists included:


  • Mr. Farah Abdullahi Abdi, formerly detained child migrant
  • Mr. Amedeo Trambajolo, Minister Counsellor, Deputy Permanent Representative, Mission of Italy
  • Mr. Raúl Heredia, Ambassador, Permanent Representative, Mission of Mexico
  • Mr. François Crépeau, UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants

The development benefits of implementing ATD, including cost savings, more efficient migrant processing, and high rates of compliance were discussed during presentations.

Mr. Farah Abdullahi Abdi, a formerly detained child migrant, spoke of the contribution that migrants could make to society, saying “migrants should be seen as an investment, not a burden”

The side event was jointly organised by Terre Des Hommes, the Destination Unknown campaign the International Detention Coalition (IDC), the Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM) and the Global Campaign to End Immigration Detention of Children.

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