Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Injustice feeds injustice

5.1 billion people—almost two-thirds of the planet's 7.53 billion human beings—do not have access to justice and that of those 5.1 billion, 1.5 billion have no way of solving legal disputes or crimes against them.  A glaring gap between rich and poor and a stark reminder of the gulf that exists between between those who are and are not given due process. 

"The justice gap is both a reflection of structural inequalities and disparities in power, and a contributor to these inequalities," said Hina Jilani, one of the task force's co-chairs. "The burden of injustice falls all too heavily on women, children, and other vulnerable groups who face the hardest struggle to access the justice system and exercise their rights."

That's according to a new report (pdf) from the Task Force on Justice, a program of the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just, and Inclusive Societies. Pathfinders is a coalition of U.N. member states and a number of non-governmental organizations that work with the New York University Center for International Cooperation. 

And the global issue of injustice has three main dimensions, the report (pdf) says. They are:

  • At least 253 million people live in extreme conditions of injustice—they are modern slaves, are stateless, or their countries or communities are engulfed in conflict, violence, and lawlessness.
  • 1.5 billion people cannot resolve their everyday justice problems—they are victims of crimes they do not report or have a serious civil or administrative problem they cannot resolve.
  • 4.5 billion people are excluded from the opportunities the law provides—they lack legal identity or other documentation related to employment, family, or property, and are therefore unable to access economic opportunities and public services, or the protection of the law. 


Tim Hart said...

The point of interest for me in this report is in which countries the lucky 2 billion people who have access to justice are considered to be residing? Having scanned the 128 page report with almost 400 endnotes and full of aspirations and platitudes from the great and the good there seems not to have had space to actually list the countries where the 5 billion people live which the report claims do not have access to justice and, as importantly those who do. I assume the UK and USA and the other rich western countries are presumed to have access to justice; an assertion which is risible. Typical of the UN puff and propaganda helping those involved in this gravy train to appease their conscience and justify their feckless existence. Roll on the revolution!

ajohnstone said...

I never read the full report, just the summary. But you are correct.

The UK has cut-back on free legal aid on many aspects of obtaining justice and increased the pay limits so that many ordinary people are refused legal aid.