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Strengthening Rural Women’s Access To Justice

Responding to the challenges above, CHRDI seeks to implement a national rural program on Strengthening Women’s Access to Justice: Making Rights a Reality for Women and Girls.

The Program seeks to enhance access to justice for women and girls through mutually-reinforcing outcomes: (a) increase women and girls’ capacities to understand and claim their rights; (b) improve national and local capacities to deliver justice to women and girls; (c) strengthen legal and policy frameworks on women’s access to justice.

Violence against women remains a significant development barrier in Sierra Leone .

Although the country has a formal judicial system and existing laws that guarantee gender equality, the state seldom provides effective protection or legal support to women and girls affected by gender-based violence.

At the local level in particular, women and girls who experience domestic or sexual violence are often left to fend for themselves.

There is too little access to free or low-cost legal advice and psychosocial services, and the quality of the services that are available is inadequate, especially for women living in rural areas and those with disabilities.

Women who are victims of rape are often stigmatised and ostracised by community members.

Village leaders, police and other local authorities conduct informal mediations between perpetrators and the victims’ families, often neglecting rights and dignity of the women themselves, or their capacity for self-determination. Court proceedings are complicated and usually time-consuming.

CHRDI will pilot this project within the Western Area Rural areas and later rollout across the country’s rural areas. We will provide civil legal services and access to justice to low-income women and girls in the rural community throughout Sierra Leone.

The Campaign for Human Rights and Development International uses the “justice gap” metaphor to describe the shortfall between legal needs and available legal services, the reason why CHRDI authorities has now established the civil legal aid services for rural women and girls in Sierra Leone.

#CHRDI Legal Aid for Rural Women and Girls Program.

Note: Campaign for Human Rights and Development International (CHRDI) is a Rights based social-policy advocacy Organisation. We Draw attention to the responsibility of duty-bearers to uphold human rights, and seek to support rights-holders to claim their rights. CHRDI is in Special Consultative Status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council and accredited to many UN Agencies.

12-08-2019
©CHRDI-HUMAN RIGHTS and POLICY BRIEF

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