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United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile
Justice ("The Beijing Rules")
Adopted by General Assembly resolution 40/33 of 29 November 1985
Part one
GENERAL PRINCIPLES
1. Fundamental perspectives
1.1 Member States shall seek, in conformity with their respective general interests, to further
the well-being of the juvenile and her or his family.
1.2 Member States shall endeavour to develop conditions that will ensure for the juvenile a
meaningful life in the community, which, during that period in life when she or he is most
susceptible to deviant behaviour, will foster a process of personal development and education
that is as free from crime and delinquency as possible.
1.3 Sufficient attention shall be given to positive measures that involve the full mobilization of
all possible resources, including the family, volunteers and other community groups, as well as
schools and other community institutions, for the purpose of promoting the well-being of the
juvenile, with a view to reducing the need for intervention under the law, and of effectively,
fairly and humanely dealing with the juvenile in conflict with the law.
1.4 Juvenile justice shall be conceived as an integral part of the national development process
of each country, within a comprehensive framework of social justice for all juveniles, thus, at
the same time, contributing to the protection of the young and the maintenance of a peaceful
order in society.
1.5 These Rules shall be implemented in the context of economic, social and cultural
conditions prevailing in each Member State.
1.6 Juvenile justice services shall be systematically developed and coordinated with a view to
improving and sustaining the competence of personnel involved in the services, including their
methods, approaches and attitudes.
Commentary
These broad fundamental perspectives refer to comprehensive social policy in general and aim
at promoting juvenile welfare to the greatest possible extent, which will minimize the
necessity of intervention by the juvenile justice system, and in turn, will reduce the harm that
may be caused by any intervention. Such care measures for the young, before the onset of
delinquency, are basic policy requisites designed to obviate the need for the application of the
Rules.
Rules 1.1 to 1.3 point to the important role that a constructive social policy for juveniles will
play, inter alia , in the prevention of juvenile crime and delinquency. Rule 1.4 defines juvenile
justice as an integral part of social justice for juveniles, while rule 1.6 refers to the necessity
of constantly improving juvenile justice, without falling behind the development of progressive
social policy for juveniles in general and bearing in mind the need for consistent improvement
of staff services.
Rule 1.5 seeks to take account of existing conditions in Member States which would cause the
manner of implementation of particular rules necessarily to be different from the manner
adopted in other States.

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