SURVIVORS & REMEDY
We support survivors of international crimes all over the world in their pursuit for recognition and justice. We engage with local partners to identify the victims, research the violations, and gather evidence.
We also work jointly with local and international lawyers, activists and civil society to address the abuses, looking at all the viable opportunities for the survivors to access justice and seek redress for the harm they suffered.
SURVIVORS CENTERED APPROACH, SURVIVORS LED EFFORTS
GJG works for the survivors and with the survivors of serious international crimes, including genocide, war crimes, terrorism, human trafficking, crimes against humanity, torture, and slavery.
Survivors are at the forefront of each of our actions, prioritizing always their rights, safety, well-being, needs and wishes, with particular attention to the people facing the most vulnerable situations.
Together with them, we try to find the information needed to build the best strategies for a comprehensive approach to remedy and support them in the implementation process.
Since survivors bring a uniquely powerful and credible voice in calling to action, we support the formation of survivors’ networks for the collective articulation of concerns, meaningful engagement advocacy, campaigning, and action.
GJG stands beside survivors engaging with them in actions aimed at re-shaping their own future and creating a better world.
REMEDY CENTERED APPROACH, WITH A SPECIAL FOCUS ON COMPENSATION
International Law recognizes the right to remedies for all the victims of serious international crimes, including “access to justice” and “full and effective reparation”, intended as restitution, compensation, rehabilitation, satisfaction and guarantees of non-repetition. These rights are recognized in principle, but their implementation is outside the scope of International Law and rests with the domestic laws of each State.
As a practical matter, no State has yet adopted a comprehensive set of laws providing “full and effective” justice and remedies on a universal basis. GJG focuses on finding practical solutions to provide victims with “effective access to justice” and “compensation” to guarantee them the best opportunity to move forward in life.
Research has demonstrated that compensation has a value that goes beyond its economic sense, encompassing the entirety of a survivor’s story:
Compensation as a lifeline for survivors: compensation allows survivors to normalize their situation, integrate, and improve their status in society. The economic benefits deriving from compensation are essential for the survivors, providing the basic economic security they need in terms of education, employment, health and rehabilitation.
Compensation as victim-centered Sanction: compensation is a particularly personal form of accountability because the perpetrator/enabler pays funds directly to the survivor for specific harms suffered.
Compensation as Acknowledgment of the harm suffered: compensation does not just recognize the existence of the offense, but the specific harms that survivors have undergone because of the crime.
Compensation as Deterrence: compensation increases the cost of the crime and reassurances of non-repetition for future generations.
Compensation as Empowerment: the possibility of compensation gives victims the dignity of taking an active role in the judicial proceedings and an opportunity to advance concrete requests.
Many barriers remain for victims seeking legal remedies, especially in terms of securing adequate legal representation because of the cost of legal and technical experts, translators when required, and the costs associated with gathering evidence. In addition, claimants can face a lack of access to suitably qualified and experienced legal counsel.
For over 20 years, GJG has been creating a network of associated law firms, law professors and legal practitioners committed to provide legal advice and representation of survivors in complex litigation, draft Amicus Briefs and offer expert support to survivor-led legislative initiatives.