Over the past two years, the COVID-19 pandemic created new injustices and made many existing ones worse. Problems facing grassroots justice organizations were exacerbated over this time, but members of the Legal Empowerment Network have persevered. We asked members, as we do every year, to tell us your concerns and help define our collective path forward. Now we are sharing the major highlights – find the full survey results here.
The Network is growing!
We grew to over 10,000 individual members and more than 2,500 organizations in 2021! We already grew to more than 11,000 individuals recently, and are set to surpass 3,000 organizations later this year. As individuals, we are now spread across 177 countries globally and continue to be a force to be reckoned with.
Despite some success, financing and protection issues continue
For many years now, financing has been the top concern for most legal empowerment organizations. The number of members who either have to make cuts to operate or may not be able to operate due to lack of funds has kept rising with 2021 affecting nearly 80% of the respondents.
In 2020, we launched the COVID-19 Grassroots Justice Fund and achieved its goal of fundraising US $1 million for rapid-response, flexible grants that were provided to 60 member organizations in 38 countries. This year, we have also co-launched the Legal Empowerment Fund, which will distribute millions in long-term core funding to grassroots justice groups across the globe over many years to come. While our efforts to address these concerns have been successful, there is still a long way to go, and we will continue to focus on financing into the future.
Besides funding, members felt the impact of receding democratic spaces. 74% of members struggled to do legal empowerment work in their political and social contexts, and 50% said they or someone they know have been threatened, arrested or harassed pursuing justice in the last year. This marks yet another increase compared to the 2019 record.
In addition, members also mentioned the lack of access to technology and limited digital capacity making it harder for them to engage online. Vaccine equity is also another major concern especially for marginalized populations who are increasingly excluded due to discrimination and socio-economic status. Due to the existing digital divide and discrimination in our society, the impact of pandemic has been felt more deeply in many communities.
The COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped civic space and heavily impacted issues of security and protection. We are planning a course on protection of grassroots justice defenders within the next year. As we follow the journey of empowerment with our members, solidarity with others in the network helps to keep us united and strong in advancing our common values and sustaining results.
As we continue to grow and face new challenges, we learn what works along the way
On a positive note, Network activities and efforts are having an impact! Members shared incredible stories with us on how they gain new knowledge and skills, as well as how the network has helped improve their organization’s work and deepened their impact on the community. Our survey shows that we feel like a part of a community within the network and the network is becoming a relevant part to our collective journey towards legal empowerment.
For the second consecutive year, members wanted us to prioritize community organizing & empowerment and training and support to community paralegals. We also continue to see interest in the areas of women’s rights and land and environmental justice for learning opportunities.
And we’re listening – after holding the first Legal Empowerment Leadership Course virtually, we are in the process of building virtual courses on the topics that matter most to members to complement in-person learning opportunities. We are excited to launch virtual courses on a number of topics by the end of this year to expand learning opportunities across the network.
Read more about the results of our annual member survey HERE, and stay tuned for more information about upcoming courses, our 10th anniversary, and more soon.
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.
We may, from time to time, store and archive the information you submit to or through the Site and Forum. The information that we gather may include your name, title, and address, telephone number, email address, credit card number or other elements of personal information. In addition, if you contact us, we may keep a record of your correspondence, including any information contained therein.
You may decline to provide any personal information, but please realize that you thereby may be unable to register or to participate in activities or services offered on the Site and/or Forum.
In addition to the information you submit to or through the Site and Forum, we also may collect and store data from and about you gathered in the course of your use of the Site and Forum. We call this “tracking data.”
Such tracking data may include, but is not limited to, information regarding the number and frequency of visits to the Site and Forum, the websites that you access before and after you visit the Site and Forum, the software and operating system used to access the Site and Forum, and your IP address and Internet service provider.
Our use of your Information involves various forms of communication with you, including:
We will not disclose any personal information to third parties, except:
Information provided to third parties is limited to the information needed to perform their functions. We seek to limit third-party use of information; however, we are not responsible for such third-party use of information.
We retain the right to transfer or assign all information pursuant to a merger, purchase or other transaction relating to Namati or our assets.
The current list of third-party service providers we use include:
Personal information you submit via your member account, other than information provided or content posted by you to public areas of the Site as described below, is deleted from Namati’s records following the deletion of your account. However, such information may continue to be retained by third-party service providers to which it has been disclosed for one of the reasons listed above.
Your Information is stored on Digital Ocean servers in New York, USA.
We take reasonable precautions to protect your information from loss, misuse or alteration. You should recognize, however, that there is no such thing as “perfect security” on the Internet, and we cannot guarantee the security of your information. In addition, because Internet communications are unsecure, it is also possible that the information you supply to us or your access of any information via the Site will be intercepted during transmission. We are not liable for any breach of our systems or interception of our transmission, and we hereby fully disclaim, to the fullest extent possible under law, any liability associated with any claim relating to a breach of security, data or information.
You should be aware that any information provided or content posted by you to public areas of the Site, including but not limited to interactions on the Site and information posted to the Member Directory (via your profile), the Tools Database and the Forum, may be read, collected or used by other visitors of the Site, who may not need to log in as a member to view the information. Namati is not responsible for the third-party use of any information provided in such manner. By participating in the use of the Site’s interactive features, you consent to Namati’s use or disclosure of any content that you submit. For more information on posting content, please see our Terms.
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.
You may choose to unsubscribe from future emails by using the unsubscribe link included in all mass email correspondence from Namati and the Global Legal Empowerment Network.
If a user elects to use our referral service to inform a friend about the Site and Forum, we request the name and email address of the friend. Namati will automatically send the friend a one-time email inviting the friend to visit the Site. Namati stores this information for the sole purpose of sending this one-time email, and, while a third-party mail service provider may retain the information in its database, no additional emails will be sent by Namati without further action by the friend.
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.
This Policy will be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of New York, without regard to any principles of conflicts of law. You agree that any action at law or in equity that arises out of or relates to any use of the Site will be filed only in the state or federal courts located in New York County, and you hereby consent and submit to the personal jurisdiction of such courts for the purposes of litigating any such action.
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 email@example.com, 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.