Where there is a real or perceived breakdown of justice, and where political, legal, economic, and institutional biases and barriers marginalize segments of the population, the struggle for equal access to justice can be complex and dangerous. Even in countries that have passed legislation aimed at strengthening the rights of vulnerable or disadvantaged groups—as in Morocco, with the adoption of landmark women’s rights reforms to the family code—procedural and institutional obstacles can seem insurmountable to people without significant financial resources or knowledge of the legal system.
For this reason, access to justice—as defined by the United Nations Development Programme and understood and accepted within the international human rights community—means both that laws and remedies must be just, equitable, and sensitive to the needs of the poor and marginalized, and also that the difficulties that vulnerable populations have in understanding and asserting their legal rights before the institutions set up to administer the law are addressed.
Global Rights’ Access to Justice program focuses on the latter. We build our local partners’ capacities to help the poor and marginalized access legal mechanisms and improve the functioning of those mechanisms in a way that increases faith in the justice system, while also expanding opportunities for vulnerable groups to engage with it. We believe that equal access to justice, whether through the courts or customary legal mechanisms, creates a crucial precondition for societies working to achieve broad-based prosperity and security under the rule of law. It serves as a social safety valve, fostering a structured and peaceful context in which people are able to understand and assert their legal rights.
Global Rights works throughout Asia, Africa, and Latin America to reduce these barriers. We believe that equal access to justice, whether through the courts or customary legal mechanisms, creates a crucial precondition for societies working to achieve broad-based development and security under the rule of law. It serves as a social safety valve, fostering a structured and peaceful context in which people are able to understand and assert their legal rights.
Le Monitoring du Système Judiciaire: Un Manuel pratique à l'usage des Moniteurs de la Société Civile Congolaise 2008 | Français
Programming for Justice: Access for All (UNDP) English
Rule of Law Indicators (World Justice Project) English
For more publications please click here.
Photo by Anil Shrestha
NEWS & EVENTS
On the Blog: First Time on the Fringes »
On the Blog: Fair Justice for All »
Global Rights Holds Workshop for Nigeria National Human Rights Commission »
On the Blog: Strengthening The System »
Louis-Marie Nindorera, Global Rights' Burundi Country Director, Participates in UN Consultation on Transitional Justice »
In the News: Global Rights' Strategic Litigation Workshop in Nigeria featured in Daily Independent »
On the blog: Frontline Justice »
Photos: Our partner, the Isa Wali Empowerment Initiative, conducts paralegal training in Kano State, Nigeria »
Global Rights' African Regional Workshop for Community-based Paralegal Programs featured in article CSOs Want Govt to Support Paralegals »
On the Blog: Impact in Burundi »
Global Rights Holds African Regional Workshop on Strategic Human Rights and Constitutional Rights Litigation
On the Blog: Paralegal Profile: Eye Opener to Justice »
IMPACT IN THE FIELD
Learn about the work that Global Rights’ partners are doing on the ground with the help of our training and technical assistance »