UNODC's Education for Justice (E4J) initiative has engaged with youth in numerous ways over the past five years, with a variety of methods and tools developed specifically to teach the younger generation to think about rule of law issues. One of the most popular events regularly organized by UNODC and its partners have been the hackathons - or coding challenges - held in several countries around the world, giving students the opportunity to unleash their creativity while thinking about tackling crime.
Also in the realm of technology, E4J created the Justice Accelerators, a six-month programme designed to equip young aspiring techies with the skills to build technology-driven enterprises tackling crime prevention and rule of law issues. The premise of this programme is providing a chance to explore young people's untapped innovative potential, making them ponder real life problems and seek original ways to help face them through technology.
Since its establishment in 1955, the United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice has met every five years in different countries around the world. During each Crime Congress, Member States have joined forces to set national and international policies to improve cooperation in this field. The 13th UN Crime Congress, held in Doha in April 2015, took the Crime Congress to a new level. Following the adoption of the Doha Declaration, UNODC launched an ambitious Global Programme generously funded by the State of Qatar, dedicated solely to the promotion of rule of law. In the five years since its inception, the Global Programme has established its solid credentials as a driving force on rule of law matters in the international arena, reaching millions of people around the world and actively supporting Member States in their crime prevention efforts.
With the judiciary a necessary cornerstone of law and order, ensuring a common understanding of ethics and the role that the court plays in society as well as working towards fair and equitable representation in the legal system is crucial. With this in mind, UNODC this past week convened a fruitful high-level discussion to mark the Judiciary of Iraq bringing the Global Judicial Integrity Network past the landmark threshold of 60 training sites for the Judicial Ethics Training Tools, as well as celebrate the commitment of Iraq to their implementation. The discussion featured the Chief Justices of the State of Qatar and the Republic of Iraq, along with a number of national judges who collectively shared their thoughts and ideas on this area.
Countries around the world are grappling with the many harmful effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, including health and socio-economic impacts. Peru is one of the countries in Latin America and the Caribbean most severely affected by COVID-19 in terms of public health outcomes. The social and economic impact is also considerable, and young people are extremely vulnerable to the disruptions the pandemic has caused, with major effects on their education, economic opportunities, and well-being. Many of the hardships faced by young people during the COVID-19 crisis are also known risk factors associated with crime, violence and drug use, and may expose youth to increased risks for victimization and involvement with crime during and after the pandemic.
A woman's road to accessing justice was already precarious prior to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Across the world, an estimated 243 million women and girls aged 15-49 years were subjected to sexual or physical violence by an intimate partner in the previous 12 months. A portion of these women form part of the 2.5 billion who are deprived of various forms of legal protections.
The crisis has brought the resilience of justice systems into sharp focus, with resources being diverted away from the justice sector towards more immediate public health measures. Institutions and services such as the courts, hotlines, crisis centres, legal aid clinics and social welfare services are being scaled back in many countries. Justice institutions have also been compelled to operate differently. Courts are prioritizing "exceptionally urgent" cases and placing restrictions on in-person appearances.