Several judicial officers from across the Caribbean are crediting their recent training on Gender Responsive Adjudication to helping them understand how gender plays a role in the justice system.
The three part training was facilitated by the Judicial Reform and Institutional Strengthening (JURIST) Project in partnership with the Caribbean Association of Judicial Officers (CAJO), UN Women and the Judicial Education Institute of Trinidad and Tobago (TTJEI).
The training was held between November, 2017 and February of this year in Guyana, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago and was attended by 46 judicial officers from Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Belize and Guyana.
High Court Judge Madame Simone Morris-Ramlall is among those expressing gratitude for the experience.
“Participation in the training has empowered and motivated me to constantly strive to dispense justice from a gender perspective. It has also created an awareness of how crucial it is to identify and confront unconscious biases and to avoid them infecting my decisions.
“Reinforcement of the fact that these are access to justice issues renewed my commitment to affording litigants equal access to justice and fair hearings. I am also passionate about sharing the information that I have learnt with other members of the judiciary and with the exposure to judicial education techniques I am poised to do so.”
The training had two main objectives.
Firstly, it sought to build the capacity of judicial officers to be more gender sensitive in the adjudication of family law and cases involving gender-based violence. Secondly, it also aimed to increase judicial officers’ competence in applying the Gender Equality Protocols in their day-to-day adjudication.
The training was done in three parts and at the end of part three judicial officers were asked to submit training plans for the roll out of the gender sensitive adjudication in their respective jurisdictions before March, 2019.
The judicial officers received certification as judicial educators and are expected to champion and roll out the training in their respective jurisdictions.
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