Policy Context


A common future. A fairer world.

In 2018 the Equality & Justice Alliance was officially formed. Here’s why:

During the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London in April 2018, UK Prime Minister Theresa May announced that one of the UK’s core priorities for its two year Chair-in-Office period (2018-2020) was advancing human rights and democracy to build a fairer Commonwealth for all. Central to this vision was providing support to Commonwealth Governments who wanted to reform domestic laws that discriminated against women and girls and LGBT individuals, many of which were a colonial legacy.

Promoting inclusion and the rule of law in the Commonwealth

To deliver its vision, the UK Government launched the ‘Fairness Programme.’ Supported by over £20 million in funding from the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office, the aim of the programme was to promote greater inclusion in the Commonwealth, increase women’s and girls’ empowerment and strengthen democracy and the rule of law.

The Equality & Justice Alliance’s 2-year initiative is one of nine initiatives funded under the Fairness Programme. It exists to combat the globally recognised structural and systemic inequality that adversely affects women and girls, and LGBT people.

Promoting human rights, equality and access to justice for all

The EJA is specifically focused on supporting the achievement of UN Sustainable Development Goals 5 and 16 - to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls; and to strengthen the rule of law, access to justice and promote human rights, equality and inclusion. We also seek to support the progress being made by the Commonwealth Secretariat’s campaigns to end domestic violence, end child marriage and improve parliamentary practice on equality and non-discrimination, including with regard to sexual orientation and gender identity.

To read more about the current legal and policy context for Women’s Rights and LGBT Rights, including international standards and regional instruments, click on the boxes below.