An independent and well-resourced South African criminal justice system that adequately responds to victims, accused persons, the rehabilitation of convicted offenders and community safety.
Criminal Justice Initiative works to achieve this vision by assisting civil society and government with projects that rehabilitate offenders, reduce crime, and increase public confidence in the criminal justice system. Criminal Justice Initiative also assists civil society with grants so they can meaningfully engage in public policy debates, research and advocacy.
The CJI seeks to:
- promote democratic governance, accountability and adherence to the rule of law, constitutional imperatives and international human rights standards within the institutions of the criminal justice system;
- strengthen and support the institutions mandated to exercise oversight over criminal justice agencies;
- develop and strengthen the capacity of civil society to engage in activities to improve government accountability in terms of the effective functioning of criminal justice agencies;
- lobby, advocate for and effect substantive improvements in the operations of the criminal justice system.
Areas of work that CJI currently supports
Objective: To strengthen and support civil society’s responses to corruption and monitor government’s implementation of anti-corruption legislation.
Criminal Justice Initiative supports civil society organisations that monitor government’s response to corruption by way of advocacy, law reform and monitoring.
Objective: To promote human rights-based and intelligence-driven policing in South Africa and to support civilian oversight structures.
CJI supports civil society organisations that monitor police internal accountability structures and civilian oversight structures, as well as civil society organisations that advocate for responsive policing that is in accordance with South Africa’s human rights obligations.
Objective: To promote humane conditions of pre-trial and convicted detainees while assisting with programmes that rehabilitate prisoners.
Criminal Justice Initiative supports state and civil society mechanisms for the effective reintegration of ex-offenders and civil society efforts to ensure South Africa abides by constitutional and human rights obligations in relation to pre-trial and convicted detainees.
Objective: To promote mechanisms that facilitates the transparent, efficient and accessible administration of criminal justice in South Africa.
CJI supports state and civil society mechanisms that seek to address court delays and backlogs, inconsistent sentencing patterns and those that seek alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.
Crime and Safety
Objective: To promote the dual aims of crime prevention and safety promotion.
CJI has worked with state and civil society organisations to assist communities with multi-stakeholder safety plans and efforts to monitor and advocate for the effective implementation of community safety legislation and policies.
Click on the Crime and Safety website link to access the safety plans, safety audits and other relevant information.
South-South Criminal Justice Reform
Objective: To promote human rights-based criminal justice reform in Southern Africa
Criminal Justice Initiative works regionally in Southern Africa on important cross-cutting criminal justice issues such as detainee rights and prison management.