IJJO Interviews

In this interview, Mrs. María de los Dolores Aguilar highlights the influence that the IIN has had in the ellaboration of laws in the American Continent. She mentions that the IIN is constactly encouraging the governments to incorporate children’s participation in their policies, through the Pan-American Forum of Children. In addition, Mrs. Aguilar emphasises that the promotion of children’s rights is the main spot of attention for the proposals supported by the IIN. She also refers to the part of women in society and specifically girl’s participation, basical aspect of the promotion of Human Rights and a representative governance. At the same time, she reminds that the institution has drawn up as an objective the promotion of non-custodial sanctions. To conclude, Mrs. Aguilar also mentionsthe assistance and integral protection of young children and the importance of making a concerted effort, since most of the countries involved in the IIN have high birth rates.
In this interview, Alice McGrath describes the main challenges in the implementation of juvenile justice reforms in the Asian-Pacific area. Indeed, as the author of the first report of the Asian Pacific Council for Juvenile Justice, she explains the essential objectives of the meeting (and of its subsequent publication): it should serves as a platform which enables the countries of the region to share their experiences in order to then address challenges through improved regional collaboration. Moreover, Alice McGrath describes the real situation of the children who are deprived of liberty or in conflict with the law in the Asian-Pacific countries. She also points out that an important mission to be accomplished in order to protect the rights of children in conflict with the law in the region is to focus principally on prevention initiatives. However, it should be kept in mind that different barriers still prevent the successful implementation of a specialized juvenile justice system in the countries of the region. On that matter, according to Ms. McGrath the main challenge seems to make these issues known on a domestic and regional level, which is not an easy task to do considering all the differences between the countries of the Asian-Pacific region.
Based on his thirty years experience of recognized research, he explains his studies on sexual, emotional and social young people’s development. Thanks to his experience, he comments new innovative programs being developed in the field of prevention and intervention with adolescents who commit sexual abuses. Mr. López Sánchez also explains what are the training needs for professionals who are in contact with these young people and who strive to help them and give them a better future. Finally, he speaks about the importance of promoting sex education to young people in schools to make them understand how to behave and why.
United States
In this interview, Nancy Fishman describes the activities and the programs undertaken by the Center for Court Innovation, as well as the innovative methods employed. This institution, based in New York City and whose main goal is to reduce the level of crime, has helped to lower the deprivation of liberty rates of this city. In these lines, she will, among other issues, tell us about the projects against youth armed violence that are being carried out, as well as about the programs that have been devised to address a problem that adolescents have to face in this city, namely that of being treated as adults before the judicial system.
Ms. Terrie Moffitt is mainly interested in the area of antisocial, violent and criminal behavior and in particular her work focuses on human development. Among her main concerns belong the problems of depression, psychosis and the drugs abuse among criminal offenders. Her expertise introduces us into the problematic of behavior of people in trouble with the law and their health and social situation. She also explains the effects of this difficult situation on their physical and mental health. Besides, Ms. Moffitt distinguishes two kinds of criminal offenders, the early once and the latecomers, and she describes their different models of life that are the principal causes of their troubles with the penal system. At the end, she introduces us a new field, called developmental criminology, which is a branch of the criminology department.