An estimated 5 billion people have unmet justice needs globally, including people who cannot obtain justice for everyday problems, people who are excluded from the opportunity the law provides, and people who live in extreme conditions of injustice.

This justice gap underscores the urgency of realizing justice for all and demonstrates unacceptable levels of exclusion from justice. Out now, Measuring the Justice Gap: A People-Centered Assessment of Unmet Justice Needs Around the World, a report produced by the World Justice Project with expert input from the Task Force on Justice, describes the development process, measurement approach, and progress being made to estimate the scale and impact of the justice gap. 
 

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The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals lay out ambitious targets to guide global and national development policies to 2030, including target 16.3's promise to “ensure equal access to justice for all.” However, as the availability of data on people’s experience of justice grows, it is becoming increasingly clear that the world is not on track to meet this target. The data presented in WJP's Measuring the Justice Gap report demonstrate that many people face justice problems, and too few get the justice they need. This “justice gap” undermines human development, reinforces the poverty trap, and imposes high societal costs. Closing the justice gap is therefore vital to realizing the broader development agenda and its vision of a “just, equitable, tolerant, open and socially inclusive world in which the needs of the most vulnerable are met.”

Learn more about the Measuring the Justice Gap report here, and download the report below.

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In recent years equal rights and non-discrimination protections have weakened, putting at-risk groups in danger of further erasure and marginalization. The 2022 WJP Rule of Law Index points to a rise in discrimination during the pandemic, with 70% of countries and jurisdictions having declined in equal treatment and absence of discrimination. Vulnerable groups already exposed to systemic inequality—such as the LGBTQI+ community, children with disabilities, women, and ethnic and racial minorities—were further marginalized during the crisis, and continue to be left out of solutions to “build back better.” At the World Justice Forum 2022, equal rights leaders, activists, and academics came together to discuss the increasing challenges these groups face, as well as promising solutions to address them.

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Every year, the WJP Rule of Law Index takes a detailed look at adherence to rule of law principles around the world. This year’s Index covers 140 countries and jurisdictions and contains data on eight factors that make up the rule of law, including fundamental rights, absence of corruption, and criminal justice.   Insights from the 2022 WJP Rule of Law Index show that adherence to rule of law fell in 61% of countries this year. Globally, this means that 4.4 billion people live in countries where rule of law has declined over the past year.   Rule of law impacts our rights, our safety, our well-being, and our access to justice. The WJP Rule of Law Index provides original data annually on people’s experiences with and perceptions of rule of law in 140 countries and jurisdictions around the world, making the Index a valuable resource for policymakers, business leaders, and advocates. 

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WASHINGTON (Oct. 26, 2022) – For the fifth year in a row, the rule of law has declined globally, according to the 2022 World Justice Project (WJP) Rule of Law Index®. The World Justice Project’s analysis of in-depth survey data in 140 countries and jurisdictions shows that adherence to the rule of law fell in 61% of countries this year.

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