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Access to Justice for Persons with Disabilities From International Principles to Practice

Participants: Julinda Beqiraj, Lawrence McNamara, Victoria Wicks

In 2018, the International Bar Association's Access to Justice and Legal Aid Committee commissioned the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law to conduct an international study on access to justice for persons with disabilities and the challenges they face, whether as accused, victims, witnesses, or bearers of other interests.

The resulting report explored how a rights-based approach grounded in effective access to justice could help ensure that justice policy, planning and implementation take appropriate account of the input and needs of persons with disabilities. As a core ingredient of the rule of law, access to justice enables people to have their voices heard and to exercise their legal rights. It is an indispensable factor in promoting empowerment, in securing access to equal human dignity and in achieving social and economic development.

The study pursued three complementary aims:

  • to identify barriers to access to justice for persons with disabilities;
  • to gather examples of solutions used to overcome those barriers;
  • to provide insights into how examples of good practice may be transferable internationally to inform access to justice practices.
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