Who we are
Women for Justice is Afghanistan's first
non-profit public interest law firm, based in Kabul.
Women for Justice Organization (WJO) was established in October 2018, to bring justice to survivors of systemic and widespread human rights violations and war, and, hold institutions accountable.
We are female-founded and female-led. We welcome men to work with us. We are independent, non-governmental, non-political and non-sectarian.
Founded by two award-winning women human rights lawyers, WJO is mandated to represent women, girls and other marginalized survivors (including marginalized men and boys) in 'public interest cases'.
We take these cases before domestic and international courts, dispute-resolution committees, and, the UN Special Procedures. Our cases are selected and primed to secure broader social, policy and legal changes to fulfill people's rights and strengthen institutional accountability.
Our lawyers specialize in civil and human rights litigation and the prosecution of crimes against women and marginalized groups under Afghan and international laws. As a specialist law organisation, we train and nurture the next generation of Afghan public interest lawyers.
Mission & Vision
Our vision is a peaceful Afghanistan governed by the rule of law and where people can live a life of dignity.
Our Mission is to defend people's human rights, and especially women's rights, and, advocate for institutional accountability.
Human rights violations in Afghanistan are systemic. By “systemic” we mean that institutions are involved in violations – directly or indirectly, for e.g. bacha bazi, sexual harassment on campus and virginity examinations.
“Systemic” violations are violations which are recurring and often with the consent, acquiescence or silence of those responsible. Though the violations are sanctionable under civil, criminal and/or constitutional law, even when the violations are committed in plain sight or reported widely, offenders are not held to account.
How are we different
Beyond seeking justice for specific survivors, we leverage our cases to achieve broader public interest outcomes. And we involve our clients in our advocacy.
By doing so, we extend the benefits of the case to the broader public, impacting on the fundamental rights of a larger definable group of people – thereby achieving economies of scale for justice and accountability.
Every year, we will take on 2-3 key issues. We are currently only taking cases of systemic human rights violations.
We have opened investigations into sexual abuse on university campuses and the physical and sexual abuse of street children.
What we do
To stop systemic human violations, we represent victims of human rights violations. We fight impunity. We hold institutions accountable.
We do this through strategic legal action and client-led advocacy in judicial and non-judicial settings. We also file communications to UN Special Procedures to initiate bilateral engagement with the government.
In addition to our public interest action, we provide legal advice and aid. And we train and nurture the next generation of public interest lawyers.
It always seems impossible until it's done.
― Nelson Mandela
Our partners are first and foremost our clients and their communities. We work intimately with them, empowering them to take action on issues that matter to them through collective action.
We also work with civil society and amplify their movements through legal advocacy.
We have developed networks with the Presidential Palace, First Lady's Office, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Interior, Supreme Court and various gender and technical working groups.