This Note argues that, to address the abuse of detained girls, the United States should ratify the CRC. This Note further argues that establishing a national independent office or ombudsman to monitor children's conditions of confinement in the United States is a superior proposal to creating a U.N.-appointed special representative on violence against children. This Note concludes that, upon ratifying the CRC, the United States should establish a national ombudsman for children's rights. Part I of this Note presents the problem of physical and sexual abuse of detained girls in the United States and reviews the applicable international human rights instruments. This Part discusses the CRC in depth, then concludes with a description of the U.N.'s juvenile justice standards. Part II of this Note outlines reasons for and against U.S. ratification of the CRC. This Part explains that, in spite of near universal CRC ratification, States Parties have not fully implemented the U.N.'s juvenile justice standards. Part II concludes with an evaluation of two proposals to remedy the problem of physical and sexual abuse of girls in state custody: (1) creating a national ombudsman to monitor detained children's conditions of confinement; and (2) establishing a U.N.-appointed special representative on violence against children. Part III argues that the United States should ratify the CRC and that establishing a national ombudsman in the United States to oversee the treatment of detained children is the better approach.
The Abuse of Girls in U.S. Juvenile Detention Facilities: Why the United States Should Ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child and Establish a National Ombudsman for Children's Rights,
30 Fordham Int'l L.J. 1709
Available at: http://ir.lawnet.fordham.edu/ilj/vol30/iss6/2