In 2015, the United Nations adopted seventeen "Sustainable Development Goals" as part of its 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. The seventeen SDGs call on all countries to address diverse social, economic, and environmental challenges and are intended to end extreme poverty around the world by 2030.

Goal 16 calls on all countries to ensure access to justice. In particular, Goal 16 calls on countries to: “[p]romote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all, and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.” One of Goal 16’s designated “targets”, intended to guide implementation of the goal, is: “[p]romote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all.”

Goal 16 reflects increasing recognition by the global community that access to justice is an essential component in the fight against extreme poverty.

NCAJ has supported efforts to bring US government policy into alignment with Goal 16. We are especially keen to ensure that civil justice concerns are at the heart of that conversation, in addition to criminal justice concerns.

Key Publications on Goal 16

On September 15, 2016, access to justice experts from the academic and nonprofit communities gathered for a Consultation with U.S. government officials to recommend “access to justice indicators” to guide data collection for tracking and promoting access to justice in the United States. This report lays out those findings and recommendations.