"As societies build walls of separation between communities,
ICAAD works to remove each brick to illuminate our common humanity"

Combating VAW in PICS News

Handbook puts gender bias on the spot

Lawyers and local advocacy organisations will gain access to an important tool needed to identify gender bias within legal decisions made in Pacific Island Countries (PICs). The International Centre for Advocates Against Discrimination (ICAAD) released a handbook detailing its methodology in examining sentencing patterns with a view […]

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Fijian Judiciary Collaborates with ICAAD to Improve Access to Justice

ICAAD has built credibility with the Fijian Judiciary over 5 years through rule of law trainings, publication of reports centered on judicial bias, and direct engagement with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Chief Magistrate, and Chief Registrar of the Family Courts. Recently, the Chief Justice approved […]

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Sexual Harassment Train the Trainers Workshop

ICAAD in partnership with The Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM) organised the first ever train the trainers workshop to raise awareness on combating sexual harassment in the workplace. The training targeted key stakeholders and agencies to strengthen implementation of laws and policies. The 3-day training workshop was […]

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Combating Sexual Harassment for Women

ICAAD has teamed up with Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP and Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM) to conduct a train the trainers program to combat sexual harassment in the workplace for major public and private sector groups across Fiji. The program is designed to be scaled and […]

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The Rising Tide of a Stronger Judiciary

ICAAD’s work to improve access to justice for women and girls in the Pacific is currently focusing on fact that sentences are reduced in 52% of cases of violent crimes against women and girls because of gender-bias and customary reconciliation practices. In many cases perpetrators are given […]

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Applying machine learning to detect judicial bias in the Pacific Islands

In this cross-post from ICAAD partner HURIDOCS’ blog, Natalie Widmann describes the new sentencing database we are working on to promote consistency, transparency and accountability in the Pacific Island region: Language is a beautiful way of communication that provides us with infinite ways to express ourselves. However, understanding […]

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Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) cites ICAAD on Nauru

Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) cited ICAAD in its recent submission to the Australian Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs – Conditions and Treatment of Asylum Seekers and Refugees at the Regional Processing Centres in the Republic of Nauru and Papua New Guinea: “In […]

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ABCAustralia: Report finds gender biases in Pacific lead to shorter jail

ABC Australia did an excellent interview of co-author Emily Christie on ICAAD’s report on the impact of gender bias in the judiciary.http://bit.ly/1YamzCy (Original Link) Report finds gender biases in Pacific lead to shorter jail sentences Updated January 4, 2016 at 3:54pm A new report’s found that gender biases and […]

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Report Reveals Concerns of Gender Bias in Courts in the Pacific Islands

December 10th, Honiara, Solomon Islands: Gender bias has affected sentencing outcomes in more than 50% of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) cases in Pacific Island Countries. In a report released today on judicial sentencing practices of SGBV, including sexual assault and domestic violence cases, the International Center for […]

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Justice Sector Reform to Protect Women & Girls

Sexual and gender based violence (SGBV) has a negative and profound impact on women and girls’ lives: health, education, safety, familial relationships, economic advancement etc.. According to a U.N. Women study in the Solomon Islands, 74% of women survey believed the court system would be the best […]

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#RaiseYourShield

On May 17, 2019, ICAAD Advisor Erin Thomas’ publication: Compacts of Free Association in FSM, RMI, and Palau: Implications for the 2023-2024 Renewal Negotiations (hrbrief.org/2019/03/compacts-of-free-association-in-fsm-rmi-and-palau-implications-for-the-2023-2...) was cited by the President of Palau, Tommy Remengesau Jr., in an op-ed published in The Hill (thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/foreign-policy/444291-pacific-defense-pact-renewal-vital-to-the-u...). In her piece, Erin points to critical issues stakeholders have raised regarding human trafficking, adoption policies, and COFA migrant rights among other important human rights issues.

Some of the above-mentioned policy gaps span several of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), particularly 10 (reduced inequalities) and 17 (partnership for the goals). Holistically, the existing COFA agreements represent the type of inequity that SDG 10 seeks to address. SDG 17 promotes inclusive and participatory decision-making at the international, national, and local levels. Developing transparency on both sides will allow for a more equitable process and outcome for the renewal negotiations.

The issues within the existing agreements also involve SDG 16 (peace, justice, and strong institutions) and limited access to justice regarding redress for nuclear testing and environmental destruction. This impacts targets and indicators including SDG 13 (climate action) and SDG 3 (good health and well-being). Finally, SDG 10 and 8’s targets for responsible migration policies are important considering the limited provisions for COFA migrants in the U.S. and U.S. territories.
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