In addition to 30 finalist projects, the following World Justice Challenge 2021 Honorable Mention projects were chosen for their demonstrated impact in advancing the rule of law in four thematic areas affected by the COVID-19 pandemic: access to justice for all, accountable governance, fundamental rights and non-discrimination, and anti-corruption and open government.
Join us on the World Justice Challenge 2021 Community Forum to ask questions to both finalists and Honorable Mentions, and network with other members of the rule of law community.
Ensuring the Right to Legal Representation in Cambodia
Cambodia Bridges to Justice | Cambodia
This project has amplified the legal rights of vulnerable communities, facilitated early access to justice, and prevented due process violations through the development of digital tools including "iConnectJustice," a mobile app and legal advice hotline. These tools have enabled the accused to connect to lawyers able to provide free legal aid at the touch of a button. Additionally, the project has organized collaborative roundtables between lawyers, the judiciary, and legal advocates to promote the iConnectJustice tools and advocate for the adoption of reforms that increase the effectiveness of the defender community.
For the Children's Sake: Court-referred Pro Bono Mediation
For the Children's Sake | South Africa
Justice delayed is justice denied. This project provides speedy access to justice in a terribly overloaded court system. Their solution is restorative justice by pro-bono mediation of court-referred matters. Assisting the government in its mandate, For the Children's Sake reduces court caseloads and time to resolution. The voices of women and children are heard, and devastating effects on children of protracted parental conflict are minimized. Children who are forgotten in the toxic dialogue of antagonism and remain part of the tug-of-war suffer secondary trauma and permanent health and psychiatric issues. This project also resolves cases of domestic violence, which is endemic in South Africa.
Housing Justice Project
Legal Aid Society of San Diego | United States
In the midst of the pandemic, low-income senior citizens and communities of color have faced the threat of foreclosure due to a predatory lending scheme. This price-gouging, equity-stripping scheme has disproportionately affected these targeted groups. The Housing Justice Project, in this pandemic era, provides legal services and outreach and education using innovative online platforms and resources to struggling homeowners devastated by the economic repercussions of COVID-19.
Improving Protection and Promotion of the Rule of Law Through the Strengthening of the Judiciary
Centre for Public Interest Law (CEPIL) | Uganda
CEPIL has conducted their Judiciary Scorecard Research for four years, with the aim of improving judiciary accountability in advancing access to justice in Uganda. The research covers the courts in the Central, East, West, and Northern parts of Uganda and a report of the finding is compiled, published in conjunction with the judiciary. CEPIL has continuously increased geographical coverage for improved assessment of the general performance. This Scorecard is a practical tool that is intended to help the judiciary achieve results aligned to its mission and goals, and also to achieve significant policy and organizational transformation.
Open Justice Initiatives Facing the Pandemic
Criminal Court N13 of the City of Buenos Aires | Argentina
During this challenging time of social, preventive, and mandatory lockdown for the pandemic, this project continued working remotely while other legal institutions failed people in the justice gap. Computer services and digital tools were used to continue dealing with citizens' justice demands. The work methodology focused on the use of ICTs and open justice to citizens, both already in progress, allowing the project to redesign new services in a fast and agile manner. New processes were implemented: citizens assistance by means of Electronic Filing Desk, incorporation of lawyers to the CourtElectronic Record (CER), and videoconference hearings.
Tecnopolis 2020: The Awakening
Consejo Nacional Anticorrupcion | Honduras
Tecnopolis 2020: The Awakening is the third edition of the technological event organized by the CNA, in which it is made known through a short film in 360° format and in high definition, available for social networks and cinema, the effects of corruption, recreated in virtual models, on the precariousness that is being experienced in the triage centers installed to serve the population affected by COVID-19. The purpose of this project is to be a knowledge management space through which the public is sensitized, educated, and empowered for their active participation in the fight against corruption. Given the weak transparency, accountability, and ineffectiveness of the Honduran government in the administration of the approved resources to attend the COVID-19 pandemic, CNA carried out social audit and investigation actions, which resulted in 12 reports called "Corruption in COVID-19 times," where the overvaluation of prices was identified, which represents an economic damage that exceeds L 800 million. Documentation of these irregularities was the basis for the presentation of 15 complaints to the competent authorities and to the general public, thus generating greater awareness and empowering the population to demand due accountability.
JAGA – Jaringan Pencegahan Korupsi (Corruption Prevention Network)
Komisi Pemberantasan Korupsi (Corruption Eradication Commission) | Indonesia
Jaringan Pencegahan Korupsi (Corruption Prevention Network) or JAGA, was initiated by the Corruption Eradication Commission (CEC) in 2016. JAGA encourages transparency and good governance practice in public services. Users are able to monitor, discuss, and report if there are any corruption indications. To prevent and monitor corruption regarding COVID-19 pandemic social aid, in May 2020 JAGA introduced the JAGA Bansos (JAGA Social Aid) feature, in which users are able to find information about social aid and report findings of mistargeted or fraudulent act upon the social aid which further will be responded to by the local governments and responsible ministry.
Prisons and COVID-19
Documenta - Analysis and Action for Social Justice | Mexico
This project's main objectives are getting people out of closed institutions as prisons and contribute to the protection for those in closed institutions who cannot be released, through actions such as:
- Influence humanitarian pre-releases
- Advocate at the national level so that people in prison and their families request other prison benefits
- Influence the guarantee of the right to health, hygiene, and implementation of prevention and containment measures in moments of infection
- Influence the prevention of torture and other cruel treatment in the context of a contingency
- Influence the transparency of information to disseminate information about the COVID-19 contingency in prisons
Advocacy on Rights of Migrant Workers During COVID-19
People Forum for Human Rights | Nepal
As COVID-19 cases hiked in major destination countries, the uncertainty loomed over migrant workers. They were languishing in foreign land losing their jobs, were under forced labor, and residing at unhealthy and crowded areas with no means to survive and return home. People Forum filed PIL in response to support migrant workers in destination countries and to make the Government of Nepal fulfill fundamental rights enshrined in its constitution. Responding to the heightened vulnerabilities, People Forum advocated for migrants' rights by providing free legal aid to victims, preparing policy papers, and recommending repatriation and reintegration of migrant workers.
Citizens' Budget Tracker
WeSolve | Philippines
The Citizens' Budget Tracker is a community effort to track the coronavirus response and recovery budget in the Philippines, making it possible to advocate for a better response in the future. To do so, the project is working on opening up and improving the quality of public contracting data, organizing a better COVID-19 response budget for 2021 and 2022, and tracking and reporting where the money from the first response has been spent. The project works with local scholars, the government, journalists, advocates, and researchers to improve transparency in the Philippines' COVID-19 response.