On World Social Justice Day, Namati and the Global Legal Empowerment Network came together with justice defenders from around the world to announce and celebrate the winners of the biennial Grassroots Justice Prize.
We first launched the competition in 2015 to shine a spotlight on great deeds in the field of legal empowerment. In 2017, the competition returned bigger and better than before with three prizes of US$10,000 each — one for innovation, one for courage, and one for scale and sustainability.
The competition opened in late October. Nearly 200 legal empowerment organizations from across the globe applied. Together, these applicants are tackling a wide array of justice challenges by helping people to know, use, and shape the law: from helping women, children, and families in India live lives free from violence, abuse, and exploitation, to working to decriminalize minor offenses in Malawi that target marginalized groups such as sex workers and the homeless.
Selecting a winner from this inspiring pool of candidates was difficult. A panel of judges consisting of leaders and visionaries in the field of legal empowerment narrowed it down to ten finalists for each prize. The #WalkTogether Prize for Courage was then opened to a public vote. The prizes for innovation and scale and sustainability were determined, after much deliberation, by the judges.
The winners are as follows.
In honor of Achmed Sesay, a great champion of justice and a pioneer in the growing field of legal empowerment.
Nossas Cidades educates citizens on the rights afforded to them by law when they are confronted by state violence. They train people to gather evidence and file claims, then monitor the progress of cases. Their innovative use of technology, whether via social media, the internet, and mobile phone apps, ensures that public officials and law enforcement are held accountable for their actions.They are at the cutting edge of legal empowerment efforts today.
In honor of Nomboniso Nangu Maqubela, a tireless advocate for community-based paralegals and access to justice.
Campaign for Migrant Worker Justice helps migrant farmworkers from Mexico organize to improve the working conditions in the fields in the US. CMJW trains these farmworkers on their legal rights, helps them to bring legal claims before government agencies, and raises awareness of unlawful practices and deficient laws and enforcement mechanisms. Their close collaboration with unions and use of community fundraising makes their work sustainable and scalable. They are a shining example of how strategic partnerships with like-minded groups can expand the scope and impact of legal empowerment efforts.
Supported by #WalkTogether, a global campaign to champion the voices and deeds of groups that work to advance the freedoms that unite us. Over 9,000 people cast a ballot in the public vote that determined the winner.
Kav LaOved defends workers’ rights and ensures the enforcement of Israeli labor law which is designed to protect every worker in Israel, irrespective of nationality, religion, gender and legal status. Most of the workers Kav LaOved assists are marginalized foreign nationals whose first-language is not Hebrew and who hold temporary employment visas allowing them to live and work in the country. Employers frequently take advantage of these foreign and migrant workers because of their vulnerable status in the country. The work of Kav LaOved takes true courage: defending the rights of foreign workers often goes against the tide of public opinion in a hostile political climate.
Learn more about Kav LaOved in this interview with Eliahu Abram, Kav LaOved board member and senior human rights lawyer.
The winners were celebrated at a ceremony in Buenos Aires on World Justice Day. The Argentine Minister of Justice and Human Rights, Germán Garavano, opened the ceremony. Mary Robinson and Hina Jilani of The Elders presented the winners with their awards and joined them in having a courageous conversation on what needs to be done to address the access to justice gap.
Grassroots justice defenders like these three organizations are bringing down barriers that prevent people and communities from accessing justice. But their efforts are underfunded and, in many places, under attack. It was thus fitting that at the end of the ceremony, the Global Legal Empowerment Network announced the official launch of Justice For All, a global campaign that will push for increased funding and protections for those working for justice at the grassroots.
In the year to come, Namati and the Global Legal Empowerment Network will work to shine a light on the three winners of the Grassroots Justice Prize and work to get them — and all justice defenders — the recognition they deserve.
Did you miss the livestream of the ceremony? Not to worry, you can still watch it on Facebook.
Last updated January 30, 2013.
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Last updated: May 25, 2018
This Policy describes our privacy practices and sets out your obligations and ours with respect to your use of the Site and the Forum. This Policy applies only to the Site and the Forum and does not necessarily apply to our offline collection of information.
Namati may collect and retain two types of information about Site and Forum visitors: (i) personal information that individual visitors voluntarily provide when interacting on the Site or Forum or on certain other occasions (such as via forms or in emails); and (ii) tracking data, which is data that is automatically collected from every Site and Forum visitor as they use and browse the site.
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The current list of third-party service providers we use include:
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Your Information is stored on Digital Ocean servers in New York, USA.
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The Forum uses data about your posts and other activity to make automated decisions about whether your posts are spam.
The Forum may also use data about your posts and activity to award you badges and calculate a trust level for your account. Your trust level may affect how you can participate in the Forum, such as whether you can upload images, as well as give you access to moderation and management powers in the Forum. Your trust level, therefore, reflects Forum administrators’ confidence in you, and their willingness to delegate community management functions, like moderation.
From time to time, we may email users of the Site or the Forum information regarding important developments affecting Namati and/or the Global Legal Empowerment Network. We may also email users on occasion regarding the Site or the Forum. Such emails may be sent to users of the Site or Forum even if they have not requested to receive any communication from us.
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Because Namati is concerned about the privacy protection of children who access the Internet, we comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Accordingly, the Site and Forum are not intended for use by anyone under the age of 13, and we do not knowingly collect information from anyone under 13 years of age without the consent of a parent or guardian.
We reserve the right to disclose any information to comply with any law, regulation, decree, judgment, order, subpoena or any other governmental order (“Order”) without any obligation to contest or verify the accuracy of such Order.
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The section titles in this Policy are for convenience only and have no legal or contractual effect.
The Site, the Forum, and any third party services they use, may be subject to additional terms and conditions regarding privacy and use of information. Your use of the Site and the Forum is subject to those terms and conditions, which are incorporated into this Policy by reference. In the event of an inconsistency between this Policy and any additional posted conditions, the provisions of the additional conditions shall control.
We may need to change the Policy from time to time in order to address new issues and to reflect changes on the Site or in the law. We reserve the right to revise or make any changes to the Policy, and your continued use of the Site subsequent to any changes to this Policy will mean that you agree to and accept such changes. You can tell if the Policy has been updated by checking the last revised date posted on the top of this page.
You can also access, remove, update or correct your information, and raise any questions or concerns regarding the Site or the Policy, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or mailing:
Namati Data Protection Officer
1616 P Street NW, Suite 101
Washington, DC 20036, USA
If you live in a country which has adopted the General Data Protection Regulation (EU; 2016/679), you have a right to lodge a complaint with your relevant supervisory authority about this policy and its application.
The Policy was updated in May 2018 to comply with the General Data Protection Regulations.