What We Do

Our Mission


Ira Lustbader, Litigation Director, with Denise, one of the plaintiffs in a Children’s Rights lawsuit that turned one of the nation’s worst child welfare systems into one of the best.

Every day, children are harmed by America’s child welfare, juvenile justice, education, and healthcare systems. Through relentless strategic advocacy and legal action, we hold governments accountable for keeping kids safe and healthy. Children’s Rights has made a lasting impact, protecting hundreds of thousands of children and we are poised to help millions more. They are depending on us…and you.

Our History

Children’s Rights began as a project of the New York Civil Liberties Union and, later, the American Civil Liberties Union, and in 1995 became an independent nonprofit organization. We have won landmark legal victories in Connecticut, Georgia, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Washington, DC, and Wisconsin and engaged in advocacy efforts that are changing the way child welfare is practiced in the United States. Children’s Rights is proving that failing child welfare systems not only can be fixed, but can be made to run well.