Access to Justice

Highlights of access to justice activities

  • Roundtable meetings were held in Kosovo*, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia for representatives of the judiciary, ministries of environment and justice, legal professionals and CSOs. They provided an opportunity to discuss the existing situation in terms of access to justice, and to identify difficulties and gaps in implementation and how to remove existing barriers.
  • Trainings were held for CSOs in Kosovo*, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia in order to acquaint them with access to justice rights and opportunities under the Aarhus Convention and national legislation, and to discuss strategies and methods for using administrative and court procedures and for overcoming major difficulties and barriers in implementation.
  • Trainings for judges and prosecutors were held in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Serbia, in cooperation with magistrates’ schools and judicial training centres. Training participants were acquainted with the access to justice requirements of the Aarhus Convention and EU and national legislation, as well as court practices and other means of justice, using case studies as well as discussions of common problems and solutions for removing barriers to access to justice.

Impact

  • As a result of the discussions and training, the judiciary, authorities and CSOs gained awareness and knowledge and a better understanding of the current situation, existing barriers to access to justice, and opportunities to remove or reduce those barriers.
  • Dialogue and networking were established among the judiciary, authorities, CSOs and legal professionals, which can be continued and used in the future.  
  • Cooperation was established with judicial training centres, magistrates’ schools and ministries of justice and the environment, which can be further enhanced to ensure the inclusion on their training curricula of Aarhus Convention access to justice topics and related EU and national legislation and practices.