In addition to its outreach in India, CSJ has also collaborated with international organizations working in the area of access to justice. Some are research initiatives, some advocacy efforts and some fall into the capacity building category.
Bangladesh Rehabilitation Assistance Committee (BRAC) – Capacity building of South Asian Trainers in Legal Empowerment
CSJ will conduct trainings for South Asian Trainers with the overall objective to enhance the quality and efficiency of training and capacity building processes for organizations in the field of access to justice. The specific objective of the project is to prepare a South Asian cadre of legal activists, called Master Trainers, to train trainers, who will in turn take on the mantle of instructing paralegals in their respective countries. The project will focus on developing a methodology for training paralegals using principles of Alternative Legal Education.
Swiss Cooperation for Development, Bhutan – A study to identify vulnerable groups and assess their access to justice in letter and spirit
The study being conducted with the assistance of CSJ in Bhutan, tries to establish disadvantaged groups and give recommendations to enhance their access to justice. CSJ will achieve this by providing an analysis of people’s perceptions, current practice and policies regarding access to justice. The present study is a proactive effort by the Bhutanese Government to respond to its changing socio-political situation and prepare itself to identify and respond to the needs of the vulnerable.
Indiana University- Study on Access to Justice and Socio-Economic Rights
From 2010 to 2012, a team of academic and civil society researchers from Centre for Social Justice, National Centre for Advocacy Studies, Jagori Grameen and Indiana University Maurer School of Law conducted extensive ethnographies of litigants, judges, lawyers, and courtroom personnel within multiple districts in three states: Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Himachal Pradesh. This article provides an in-depth account of the everyday struggles these actors face in the pursuit of their objectives. The findings illustrate a complex matrix of variables — including infrastructure, staffing, judicial training and legal awareness, costs and continuances, gender and caste discrimination, power imbalances, intimidation and corruption, miscellaneous delays, and challenges with specialized forums — impact access to justice in the lower tier.
University of Law, United Kingdom- Internships
CSJ collaborates with the University of Law to coordinate internships in India for students from the university who have expressed their interest in working at the grassroots. CSJ provides glimpses into the realities of the communities it works with, distinguishing it from similar organizations. Additionally, the students also aid in research by drafting and compiling summaries of case laws on chosen topics.
Working Group on Human Rights (WGHR) – Contributions to the shadow report on India
CSJ’s team members have contributed to the India chapter on the reports prepared by WGHR, informed by decades of experience in working on social justice.
CSJ’s association with WNTA and High Level Planning to redefine MDG
CSJ along with Wada Na Todo Abhiyaan has been part of the international process in determining the Post 2015 MDG Agenda.
CSJ participated in the conference for High Level Planning to redefine MDG (Millennium Development Goals) in Bali. The objective of the conference was to develop regional cooperation for promoting human rights. Beforethis conference, a national level workshop for developing a South Asian cooperative mechanism was held in Delhi to share perspectives and strategies to implement Human Rights treaties.
In its submissions CSJ highlighted the need for creating a framework for implementation of schemes and policies, promoting the principles of capability, accountability and responsiveness from the state,and emphasizing the need for incorporating rule of law, legal empowerment, justice and peace in the post-2015 agenda.
Further, in January 2014, CSJ was also present at the Open Working Group Session that provided space to non-state actors to engage with member states in shaping the new development agenda post-MDGs, post-2015,in New York.
CSJ also facilitated a signature campaign for the organization Namati, which works on access to justice to include justice, rule of law and legal empowerment as essential principles in the global development framework post-2015.
CSJ’s contribution to CEDAW shadow report
CSJ’s ongoing advocacy work on the 2002 Gujarat Riots contributed to the shadow report that National Alliance of Women (NAWO) was preparing for the CEDAW. NAWO is responsible for monitoring the Government of India’s commitments of implementing the Platform for Action with special focus on the eight-point agenda discussed at the Conference of Commitment, CEDAW, the Human Rights and other United Nations Conventions. CSJ highlighted the situation of women in post- the violence in Gujarat, especially from 2007 to 2014.
Dejusticia, Bogota- Writing Workshops
CSJ’s members have attended writing workshops organized by De Jusiticia, one on Environmental Justice and Human Rights (in 2014) and the other on Transitional Justice (in 2015).Participants contributed to the book that was produced as an outcome of the workshop.
Research/Action Project Internship- Organizational Partnership Agreement
An agreement between the Global Scholars Program (GSP) at the University of Michigan- Ann Arbor and the Center for Social Justice is designed to ensure clarity and optimize communication as we pilot partnerships between our two organizations. The principle guiding our work is one of mutual benefit and two-way learning. The goals outlined were co-created and agreed upon during our planning meeting and subsequent correspondences. The partnership will extend from October 2015-April 2016, with regular communication all through. At the end of April 2016, each party will evaluate the partnership to assess the success of the endeavor and, determine whether to enter into a new partnership agreement.