Access to Justice4All SDG 16
Microjustice was very happy when in September 2015 the United Nations launched a universal and transformative post-2015 millennium goals agenda for Sustainable Development, underpinned by rights, with people and the planet at its center. For the first time, there is now a policy framework for the Microjustice work to integrate a right based approach in all other development activities (SDG 1-16).
- 16.1 To promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development,
- 16.2 provide access to justice for all and
- 16.3 build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
To measure the progress in the implementation of the SDGs, a global indicator framework that includes targets for the 2030 Agenda has been developed. Contrary to SDGs 1 through 15, there are few tangible and actionable indicators to measure progress towards attaining SDG 16, especially ‘Providing Access to Justice’ in not included.
Microjustice has worked since 1997 on Access to Justice for All (SDG 16.2) with its scalable legal aid programs in the former Yugoslavia, Bolivia, Peru, Argentina, Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda. On the basis of this experience, we have developed the digital Legal Aid Platform as country-based tool to provide legal aid working with the local access to justice infrastructure in a country.
In order to develop an indicator & monitoring progress framework for SDG 16.2, Microjustice has developed the Legal Rights’ Protection Barometer research method. The Barometer aims to show concretely the Justice Gap from the perspective of the people, showing in which areas and why it is difficult for people to make their rights come true and to feel secure in society. Screening the state and legal aid system and indicating the concrete problems, allows Governments and relevant institutions to increase the accessibility and affordability of the legal administrative framework, practices and programs. The Legal Rights’ Protection Barometer provides a tool to make progress on SDG 16.3 giving precise technical information on the state of the legal system from the perspective of the people in a country. This allows the institutional framework to get increasingly effective, accountable and inclusive. The Barometer country reports allow for efficient lobbying activities.
If the people have Access to Justice and the institutions on all levels are accessible and affordable for the people then they are socially included. Thus, as a result we make progress on SDG 16.1. People become citizens!