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Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa (ISLA)

Johannesburg, South Africa
Joined March 2021

An Africa where sexual rights and women’s human rights are fully enjoyed by all because these rights are protected and progressed by law.

Presence in: Benin, Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda
Focus: Women's Rights

ISLA is a non-profit organization registered in 2015 and based in South Africa with a mandate to establish and develop a feminist and Pan African approach to strategic litigation as a powerful tool for social change. We seek to use the rule of law and African domestic and regional courts to advance women’s human rights and sexual rights. We are the first Africa-based and -run strategic litigation initiative with a regional focus and expertise on women’s human rights and sexual rights.

Our vision is to realise an Africa where sexual rights and women’s human rights are fully enjoyed by all because these rights are protected and progressed by law.   We implement Social justice lawyering to shape the Africa we want – that is free from discrimination, poverty, violence, slavery, ill-treatment – persecution – with respect for bodily autonomy and human dignity.

ISLA undertakes its efforts to eliminate Violence Against Women (VAW) through four pillars: Litigating for Social Change, Strengthening Capacity to Litigate, Building Partnerships for Social Change and Producing Knowledge to Support Strategic

Litigation.  Our violence against women thematic area aims to enhance the protection of women from violence through the articulation of progressive standards and contribute to the development of legal precedents that elaborate on state obligations to protect women

from violence. Primarily, ISLA works towards achieving this through strategic litigation before domestic courts and regional human rights systems.

 

 

People Associated With This Organization

Nthateng Mhlambiso

South Africa  
Initiative for Strategic Litigation in...
Joined March 2021
Interests: Community / Customary Land Rights, Gender-based violence, Generalist Legal Services, Women's Rights
I am the-ISLA's Development Manger responsible for Resource Mobilisation, Grant Management and Monitoring and Evaluation.

Zeenat Sujee

South Africa  
Initiative for Strategic Litigation in...
Joined June 2021
Interests: Community / Customary Land Rights, Economic Empowerment, Education, Environmental Justice, Family, Gender-based violence, Health, Housing & Sanitation, Women's Rights
I am an attorney and currently based at the Initiative for Strategic Litigation in Africa, where I will be working on women's socio-economic rights. I have practiced as a social justice lawyer for approximately 11 years, whilst at the Legal Resources Centre and the Centre for Applied Legal Studies. At both these organisations, I have worked in matters related to access to housing, water and sanitation, health and gender rights. As a result of my practice, I completed my LLM on 'Towards Feminist Approaches in Housing Cases in South Africa'. In 2019, I left practice and joined the Constitutional Court in South Africa as a law researcher. I was the inaugural South African Stephen Ellmann Fellow to New York Law School and also the inaugural Cameron Schrier Fellow at the Southern Centre for Inequality Studies at Wits University in 2020/2021. My research interests has been feminist litigation in socio-economic rights matters and broader public interest litigation. I am currently researching building of social movements for feminist litigation and the importance of legal mobilization in gender related matters. I hope to gain knowledge on social movements from colleagues of the movements and to gain expertise on how mobilization ought to be done and to build a network of feminists that would support litigation in various countries in Africa.

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