SIDE EVENT Women and Customary and Informal Justice Systems: A Global Consultation on Navigating Complex Pathways to Justice
In the developing world, 80% of disputes are resolved by customary or informal justice systems (CIJs). This means that a majority of women rely on dispute resolution outside of the formal courts. Issues of significance to women, such as inheritance, family formation, divorce, property rights, control and governance over land and natural resources, and even violence against women and girls, are resolved or adjudicated in these systems. Despite their perceived advantages, CIJs are often skewed against women, favoring male-dominated structures, patriarchal values, and discriminatory and harmful outcomes for women. While understanding the need to enhance justice delivery, these challenges compel placing women’s issues and concerns at the center of any conversation on CIJs.
This event, organized by the International Development Law Organization (IDLO) and with the support of the Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA-Kenya), Landesa, Uganda Women's Network (UWONET), and Rights + Resources (RRI) will provide space for an open consultation on the relationship between women and CIJs, on legal pluralism and on the intersection of formal and informal justice systems. With a gender lens and a focus on challenges and opportunities of engagement, participants will discuss the specificities of promoting women’s rights within plural legal systems.
In particular, the event will seek to answer the following questions:
- What challenges do women encounter when they seek justice through CIJs? Do these challenges vary based on the kind of cases – such as gender-based violence, land rights, family matters, access to services – type of CIJ, location, or level of recognition by formal laws?
- Are there lessons and approaches for strategic engagement with CIJ systems? What are the possible entry points for engagement? Are there good practices across themes and regions to support them?
This event is part of a series of global consultations being initiated by IDLO to inform policy and programming on CIJs, plurality and access to justice.
15:00 - 16:15 | Friday, March 15, 2019 | Ex-Press Bar, UN Headquarters, New York
Panel discussion. Concept note available for download below.
Welcome remarks and Introduction by Irene Khan, Director-General, International Development Law Organization
- Prof. Patricia Kameri-Mbote, School of Law, University of Nairobi
- Dr. Gina Alvarado, Senior Research and Evaluation Adviser, Landesa
- Jemimah Collins Aluda, Board Member, Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA-Kenya)
- Ms. Rita Aciro-Lakor, Chief Executive Officer of Uganda Women’s Network (UWONET)
- Dr. Omaira Bolanos, Director, Latin America Program, Rights and Resources (RRI)
- Moderator: Dr. Ilaria Bottigliero, Director, Policy, Research and Learning, IDLO
RSVP by Tuesday, March 12 here. PLEASE NOTE: For non-UN Pass holders, a Special Event Ticket (SET) is required to attend the event. Please request your SET in your RSVP email.
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The event may have filming/photography for social media and future promotional and archival purposes. Please contact an IDLO staff member at the event if you would prefer not to be filmed / photographer, or email communications[a]idlo.int.
Photo: © LANDESA