UN Global Goal 16: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions

Solutions Journalism Network

Legal systems provide the framework for countries to implement the Global Goals in the 2030 Agenda. In particular, strong institutions and the rule of law should protect the rights of citizens and serve as the foundation for inclusive and equitable sustainable development. Building the capacity for countries to contribute to the 2030 Agenda requires peace, security, and enrolling stakeholders from all sectors of society—local and international policymakers, civil activists, academics, and those working in the private sector.

Goal 16 calls on countries to end violent conflict, instability, crime, corruption, and human rights violations. The targets include:

  • Reduce deaths from homicide and armed conflict worldwide.
  • End abuse, trafficking, and all forms of violence against children.
  • Promote transparent, inclusive, and accountable legal systems at all levels.
  • Stop bribery and corruption.
  • Provide legal standing and protection under the law for all citizens and residents.

The stories in this collection illustrate solutions aimed at strengthening institutions, providing equal access to justice, and increasing representation for all. In South Carolina, Milan Polk writes, students filed a lawsuit to remove barriers to voter registration in the states where they attend school. The students are part of a new wave of voters coming of age and eliminating barriers to exercise their rights.  Protection under the law is an important aspect of inclusivity. Read on to learn about the actions lawmakers and the Pennsylvania Domestic Worker Alliance are taking to ensure that domestic laborers are no longer left out of the protections afforded by labor laws.

Increasing transparency and oversight helps keep governmental systems accountable. When the “Badass Grandmas” of North Dakota set out to pass a constitutional amendment in their state to overhaul government ethics, they faced a lot of opposition from political donors who wanted to remain anonymous. But with the help of several pro-democracy organizations, the campaign succeeded in getting ethics commissioners into office.

We also learn how Taiwan's strong command and control structures, combined with public trust and government transparency, enabled it to quickly stem the spread of COVID-19 and "flatten the curve."

Click here for more stories in the Solutions Story Tracker on peace, justice, and strong institutions.

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