Sustainable Development Goal 16 (SDG 16) provides an international policy agenda to work on the legal inclusion of marginalized groups at the global level. It reads:

Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels

The common denominator between its three clauses is legal inclusion.

Legal inclusion is defined as:

“The situation in which people and nature  a) have their basic legal needs satisfied through adequate registrations, contracts, or their ‘status’ demonstrated in any other form, which enables them to b) enjoy legal protection by means of effective access to remedies and the court system, and c) have access to the rights, benefits and entitlements of the society in which they live.

Microjustice4All’s Legal Inclusion Mapping Program is a country-specific and action-oriented framework to implement the legal inclusion aspects of SDG 16.

The Legal Inclusion Mapping Method is an extensive country-specific and action-oriented three-part  program:

  • The Legal Inclusion Mapping 
    a) examines a country’s overall situation of legal inclusion/exclusion, and
    b) identifies the country’s excluded groups, as well as the needs for their legal empowerment, pointing to solutions.
  • The Comprehensive Legal Empowerment Plan to Achieve Legal Inclusion is a solution-based program that takes the results of the Mapping’s analysis to implement sustainable and inclusive solutions to meet the excluded groups’ legal needs. The Plan involves stakeholders in the specific excluded groups as well as in the legal and government sector.
  • The Progress Monitoring Framework on SDG 16 comprises an Implementation Plan establishing targets and a timeline for the implementation of recommended: a) modifications and introduction of innovative tools for the legal-administrative and institutional framework; b) innovative standardized, scaled-up legal service provision for the various target groups. It monitors and measures progress through periodical update mappings vis-à-vis the baseline established in the mapping (until 2030).

The Legal Inclusion Method is a tool that maps vulnerable persons in a country to empower them into becoming full citizens, and for nature to be protected. For the purposes of the Mapping, these two are referred to as ‘excluded groups’, so as to contrast them with ‘included groups’ and allow stakeholders to identify where action is necessary.

The objectives of this endeavor are:

  • To make legal exclusion tangible and actionable, making clear what issues need to be addressed for the inclusion into society of excluded and marginalized groups
  • To produce a legal inclusion index through the categorization of countries
  • To define and implement Comprehensive Legal Empowerment Plans per country for the legal inclusion of the excluded and marginalized groups, providing access to justice for all and building effective, accountable and inclusive institutions
  • To get legal inclusion activities on the sustainable development agenda and included in the international cooperation policies and funding schemes
  • To upscale legal diagnosis activities and facilitate their standardization
  • To develop an implementation tool and a progress & monitoring framework to reach SDG 16
  • To develop the legal-administrative system of a country on the basis of the needs of different marginalized groups, increasing legal security as a whole -which larger scale and international businesses will profit from-, and enhancing sustainable development
“Societies without a predictable legal framework are societies where people do not invest in their future, or the future of their country”

(Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary-General, New York, 19 September 2013).

Want to know more?

Click on Legal Inclusion to know what MJ4All understands by these words

Click on Legal Inclusion Mapping to know more about the first part of the Program

Click on Comprehensive Legal Empowerment Plan to know more about the second part of the Program

Click on Current Mappings to see how our Programs are doing

Click on Starting a New Mapping if you want MJ4All to conduct a Mapping of your country


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