Just Future Alliance
The JFA aims to strengthen the social contract in fragile settings in three interconnected outcome areas:
The Just Future program aims to improve security provision to marginalized communities by engaging with relevant actors and advocating for accountability, responsiveness, and inclusion in accordance with human rights standards. To achieve this, we need to prioritize people-centered solutions and shift the relationship between society and security providers. By effectively guaranteeing people’s safety, security services can build mutual trust and confidence between the most excluded communities and state security providers.
It’s essential that people see themselves as the owners of security, and civil society can help them by monitoring and holding duty-bearers accountable, while working with local security actors and international partners to improve security provision and make it more effective in meeting people’s needs.
Approach to security that focuses on the perspectives and needs of the population, particularly in terms of political dialogue and the responsiveness of security institutions (link to reports on security perceptions)
- human security,
- civilian protection,
- dialogue between all parties to a conflict,
- tackling of corruption,
- improving access to aid.
Improving security at the grassroots level by educating and empowering community-based organizations to speak up about security issues, advocating for better support and funding for local security committees, building the capacity of civil society organizations to influence national security processes.
Understanding security concerns and needs of communities, accumulating knowledge and mobilizing key security actors by supporting local security advisory committees, organizing community dialogues to improve security situation in the Gao region, conducting trainings and workshops to enhance SSR/SSRG awareness, and completing a comprehensive website for the Hybrid Security Governance Observatory.
Focused on enhancing the ability of CSOs and CBOs to monitor local security situations and trends, and protect civilians by launching an Observatory for Security Sector Governance, carrying out a study on military operations and the protection of civilians, strengthening the dialogue between civil society and state actors and including more women and youth in discussions on security.
Providing a voice for constituencies by enabling communities to have a say in security decision-making processes and advocating for women and youth’s representation in Police Community Relations Committees, informing campaigns for more accountable and rights-based policing.
Access to Justice for All
When people are able to claim and enforce their rights, obtain remedies for grievances, and resolve conflicts non-violently, within a framework of rule of law, they have access to justice. Justice seekers should be able to quickly and affordably resolve their problems using the pathways to justice they view as most relevant and legitimate. Irrespective of which pathways they use, their justice journeys should occur within a framework of rule of law, transparency, and accountability, with respect for procedural rights like due process, and delivering outcomes that reflect real and tangible justice.
Agenda 2030, and especially SDG16.3, is the basis for Just Future’s strategy on access to justice. A focus on everyday justice entails a bottom-up approach in country-level change pathways. This includes building on and strengthening existing capacities of primary stakeholders at country-level.
The intended result of Just Future is to mobilize and equip CSOs, CBOs, social movements, and informal activist groups to take action that (1) empowers the most excluded constituencies to realize their rights and manage disputes non-violently through diverse pathways to justice, and (2) strengthens the accessibility (including affordability), responsiveness and accountability of justice providers.
In 2022, the JFA was working to promote access to justice for all through advocacy, research, and implementation of policies and practices that promote accountability, the rule of law, and inclusive and peaceful societies.
The three outcomes: customary and informal justice (CIJ), land justice, and transitional justice
The JF partners continue to work on three justice outcomes: customary and informal justice (CIJ), land justice, and transitional justice. The JF partners are advocating for a global policy shift and innovation on customary and informal justice, and conducting research to better understand the relationship of customary and informal justice to transitional justice. The JFA is also working to address atrocity crimes and past (and present) human rights abuses, and they are advocating for the creation of transitional justice mechanisms that are gender-sensitive and inclusive.
Due to the Taliban takeover, the JFA’s efforts centred around research, commissioning a report and policy briefs on Pashtunwali and Sharia to influence international donors and the rule of law and justice actors to nuance their approach to CIJ in Afghanistan.
Successful lobby prompted the Minister of Justice and the Minister of Interior to engage with vulnerable constituencies to discuss better access to justice. JF partners are advocating for policy changes and the adoption of a national legal aid strategy as well as the passage of the Code of Civil Procedure by the Council of Ministers.
JF partners have helped victims to organize to benefit from Law No. 22/065 on the protection and compensation of victims of mass crimes. The working group on the law protecting human rights defenders in DRC, of which the Alliance is a member, contributed to the bill on the protection and responsibilities of Human Rights Defenders. The bill was adopted by the National Assembly. JF partners continue to push for a Land Law in the context of Land Law reform.
JF partners in Mali lobbied for increased numbers of justice actors to provide greater justice for rural populations of Mali and helped to mobilize people to lobby and advocate for their interests.
JF partner, Timidria has continued L&A work on the revision of the law 2003-25 criminalizing slavery, focusing on the challenges of the implementation of the law. This has resulted in the integration of all the recommendations in the draft of the new law. Timidria also prepared a position paper on the effectiveness of the district courts submitted to the Ministry of Justice.
JF partners have been very involved in the establishment of the Commission for Truth, Reconciliation and Healing (CTRH), through mobilizing input from constituencies, participation in sub-national and national consultative meetings as well as in the technical Transitional Justice Working Group.
Inclusive Political Decision-Making and Peace Processes
Without frameworks to enable people to participate in political decision-making and peace processes, there cannot be inclusive and sustainable peace. For Just Future, the main priority is to create access, to facilitate meaningful participation and to ensure that the most excluded constituencies can actually influence and shape political decision-making and peace processes to make them responsive to their needs, concerns and priorities.
Just Future will aim to ensure that patriarchal and gerontocratic structures do not limit challenges to (in)formal, harmful structures. It is vital to work with power-holders to help them understand the value of collaborating with those most excluded constituencies: most often women, young people and those who have been displaced from their communities.
To ensure the change is inclusive, all groups need to be involved in finding the right stakeholders to create the right change in society. Finding the right duty bearers and decision makers is in the often patriarchal societies Just Future works in more challenging for certain group, such as women’s rights organizations and youth-led groups. Facilitating access, creating support, strengthening capacities are all necessary to increase civic space, to maintain and promote human rights and to ensure meaningful and inclusive participation.
In this context, the Youth Advocacy Network (YAN), as an integral part of the Just Future Alliance was formed to promote youth-inclusive political and peace processed within international governing bodies.
The JF Alliance has been advocating for policy agendas on Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) and Youth, Peace, and Security (YPS) at the international level towards UNSC, EU, AU, ECOWAS, and others to empower excluded constituencies in inclusive political decision-making. The international and regional JF partners aimed their advocacy efforts at a number of key international processes and frameworks that directly affect the six JF countries.
The Alliance has focused on enabling spaces for advocacy, including providing physical spaces for dialogue, town hall gatherings, and provincial meetings between CSO activists and key stakeholders.
JF partners supported community and under-represented civil society groups to be included in local consultation bodies, convene stakeholders in solution-oriented community dialogues, and lead their own advocacy initiatives at national and local level.
JF partners supported CBOs to engage in advocacy and work together, and contributed to the adoption of DRC’s first National Action Plan on Youth, Peace, and Security (YPS).
JF partners established inclusive spaces for direct engagement between civil society and community representatives and relevant regional and local authorities, as well as their participation in meetings and workshops on specific topics of inclusion with diverse civil society and community representation, including women, youth, and groups with specific needs.
JF partners successfully engaged with national, regional, and local authorities, including traditional leaders, to work on inclusive policies. The JF partners also organized parliamentary workshops and multi-stakeholder dialogues on peace and security issues, which resulted in recommendations for more inclusive actions.
the JF partners focused on women’s representation and successfully campaigned for the full implementation of the gender quota in the revived peace agreement. An annual Women Gathering was held, which agreed on a roadmap for civil society organizations’ role in the South Sudan National Action Plan.