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International development and human rights

“...An effective legal and judicial system is not a luxury but a key component of a well-functioning state and an essential ingredient in long term development.” James Wolfensohn – ex president of the World Bank.

Solicitors and the legal profession have a clear role to play in championing the values and concepts of Justice, Fairness, Equity and Legitimacy. We aim to promote the values and principles that underpin the legal profession by:

“Supporting the legal profession in upholding the rule of law, advocating access to justice and promoting and protecting Human Rights.”

The Law Society’s International Department has been carrying out externally funded project work for the best part of a decade. During this time we have received substantial grants from development agencies and government, and worked in partnership with bar associations/NGOs and governments overseas to deliver projects which promote and protect human rights; support the rule of law and access to justice; and encourage economic development. See below for examples of some of our International work.

Our involvement in such projects can take many forms. This can range from: working with local NGOs in managing direct service delivery, the provision of short and long term expert consultancy work; research and policy recommendations to government; delivery of training and seminars for lawyers and the legal profession.

We undertake this work because we believe that upholding the rule of law, advocating access to justice and promoting and protecting human rights serves both the interests of our members, and the legal profession globally, and we believe that it is in the common interests of the legal profession throughout the world to promote the public interest role that lawyers can and should play in society.

Making legal institutions accessible and responsive to all, including the underprivileged is a central challenge to the legal profession. We believe that lawyers have a key role to play in helping to build and establish lasting structures processes and institutions that are built on the values and principles that underpin the legal profession.

Spotlight

Podcast now available from our event: In conversation with Asma Jahangir on law, gender and religion

A free podcast is now avaialble from our event  “Law, Gender and Religion; In conversation with Asma Jahangir” which was held at chancer Lane on 30 July 2014.

Background:

September 2014 human rights update now available

The September 2014 update is now available.

Our updates include news about the Law Society's human rights activities, volunteering and job opportunities, events and training.

If you would like to receive our free updates please email sarah.j.smith@lawsociety.org.uk

Law Society raises concerns over HRDs in DRC

The Law Society is deeply concerned by reports of the arbitrary arrest, detention and torture of the human rights defenders Ms Médiatrice Riziki and Ms Angélique Navura. They are members of Ensemble pour la Paix et l'Encadrement des Femmes en Milieu Rural - EPEFMR (Together for Peace and Supervision of Women in Rural Areas).

Read intervention here

Kuwait: Law Society concerned for the present welfare of Mr Abdulhakim Al Fadhli

The Law Society is concerned for the present welfare of Mr Abdulhakim Al Fadhli.  Mr Al Fadhli is a member of and advocate for the Bedoun community within Kuwait.  We are concerned that he appears to have been targeted for arrest as a result of his current and past legitimate and peaceful activities as an advocate for the Bedoun community.

 Read the intervention here