Just and Caring Communities


Our children will play freely in parks, walk safely to bus stops, and
learn in schools as sanctuaries, with neighbors and public servants as
guardians of their well-being.


Both community and state-sponsored violence rob children of
peace and play. Guns are the leading cause of death for children and youth in America. Two-thirds of the young people in the juvenile justice system are children of color. Children are negatively impacted by immigration enforcement efforts, as 1 in 4 children in the United States have at least one foreign-born parent.

Policy Path

In this zone, CDF will advocate for public policy related to: (1) Gun safety and restrictions, (2) Public health approaches to public safety, (3) Youth justice reform, and (4) Immigration Reform.

Moonshot Generational Commitment

Eliminate youth jails and detention centers to deliver on CDF’s historic commitment to end the “criminalization of children.

Learn More

Related Updates

  • Statement: Children’s Defense Fund-Ohio Remembers the Legacy of Brigid Kelly

    Children’s Defense Fund-Ohio is saddened to learn of the passing of its friend and former Advisory Board member Brigid Kelly. Brigid died Tuesday evening after a two-year battle with cancer. …

  • Education Equity

    CDF-Ohio State of School Discipline Report 2024

    This report describes the state of exclusionary school discipline practices in Ohio as a contributing factor to the community to prison pipeline.…

  • Child Poverty

    Children’s Defense Fund Statement on 2024 State of the Union 

    Last night, President Biden presented a vision for building a nation where all children can thrive, from crucial interventions to provide children and youth with high-quality early learning experiences to economic and community interventions that create conditions for young people to grow up with dignity, hope, and joy.  …

  • Child Welfare

    For Our Children – Unleashing the Joy: CDF’s Pursuit of Child Well-being

    Ten years ago this year, Ramesh Raghavan and Anna Alexandrova published research on child development in a scholarly article entitled, Toward a Theory of Child Well-Being. In the article, they document historical conceptualizations of child well-being, a policy history of the notion of child well-being, methods, and implications for measuring well-being, and–after reviewing several theories–posit one for adoption in the field. …