Bureau of Children's Justice

Mission Statement

The Bureau’s mission is to protect the rights of children and focus the attention and resources of law enforcement and policymakers on the importance of safeguarding every child so that they can meet their full potential.

Although children do not write checks and cannot always advocate for themselves, they are consumers of both public and private goods and services, and like adult consumers, they are entitled to certain standards of quality and care under the law.

Staffed with both civil rights and criminal prosecutors, the Bureau will focus its enforcement and advocacy efforts on several areas, including:

  • California’s foster care, adoption, and juvenile justice systems
  • Discrimination and inequities in education
  • California’s elementary school truancy crisis
  • Human trafficking of vulnerable youth
  • Childhood trauma and exposure to violence

The Bureau of Children’s Justice will draw on the wealth of expertise within CADOJ on issues impacting children’s legal protection, including civil rights, education, consumer protection, nonprofit charities, child welfare, privacy and identity theft, and fraud. The Bureau will use the criminal and civil law enforcement powers of the California Department of Justice to identify and pursue much-needed improvements to policies impacting children, and work with local, state, and national stakeholders to enhance supports available for children in need and to hold those who prey on children accountable.

As chief law officer of the State of California, Attorney General Becerra is committed to seeing that laws and regulations enacted to protect children are consistently and effectively enforced.

Publications

California’s public schools serve more than six million children and their families. The State’s educators have the incredible opportunity, and responsibility, to create and maintain secure and peaceful learning environments for all students, regardless of nationality or immigration status. In a state in which half of all children have at least one immigrant parent, the ways in which our schools handle immigration issues are critically important.

Attorney General Becerra issued the following guidance pursuant to Assembly Bill 699 (AB 699) by joint authors Assemblymembers Patrick O’Donnell (D-Long Beach) and David Chiu (D-San Francisco).

AB 699 was passed to address the fear and confusion expressed by school officials in the wake of the Trump Administration’s immigration enforcement-related activities and anti-immigrant rhetoric. The guide describes courses of actions that public schools and their administrators can take when interacting with officers who are enforcing immigration laws. It also encourages school administrators to contact the Attorney General’s Office for additional support.

The checklist is available in Spanish, Traditional Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Tagalog, and Arabic.

Learn more about the Bureau