Strengthening the rule of law in Jordan has long been stated as a key objective of government reform strategies with the objective of greater independence of the judicial system, increased public confidence in the processes and decisions of the courts, greater protection of fundamental human rights, a more robust civil society and increased economic opportunities for business growth and foreign investment in Jordan.
USAID assistance in the rule of law area has helped to advance the establishment of a modern, independent, and professional judicial system that is consistent with international standards. This includes investing long term in legal and judicial education at various levels, enhancing legal professionals’ knowledge of human rights law and advocacy and improving the public’s understanding and perception of the justice system.
USAID’s current programs support the Government of Jordan’s (GOJ) efforts to develop independence and promote appropriate checks and balances among the three branches of government, thereby expanding opportunities for meaningful citizen engagement in governance and promoting protection of human rights. USAID encourages full implementation of the newly-adopted GOJ judicial strategy to secure the financial and administrative independence of the judiciary. We work with the legislative body to support its role in policymaking and to oversee executive performance. At the executive level, accountability is promoted and technical assistance provided to bring about legal and regulatory reforms.
USAID’s newest programs in rule of law will focus on improving the legal environment, helping to address a number of gender-specific legal discriminations faced by women and girls, supporting legal aid for victims of human rights abuses, contributing to women’s shelters, improving access to justice and encouraging gender-sensitive practices among justice sector personnel.
Examples of USAID-supported impacts on strengthening the rule of law include:
- Automated all 74 courts with a custom Arabic-language case management system.
- Modernized and expanded continuing education for judges at the Judicial Institute – a regional model of excellence.
- Created a Future Judges Scholarship Program for the best university students to obtain law degrees and commit to serving as judges, thereby significantly increasing the pool of potential future female judges.
- Provided grants to civil society organizations to educate more than 12,000 Jordanians, primarily women and youth, about individuals’ rights under the law and justice sector reforms.
Last updated: November 21, 2013