60 years of shaping the legal landscape
|Headquarters||59 Carter Lane, London EC4V 5AQ|
Justice, an all-party law reform and human rights organisation, was founded in 1957 following the visit of a group of British lawyers to observe the treason trials of members of the African National Congress (ANC) in apartheid South Africa and the show-trials in communist Hungary.
Its first chairman was Hartley Shawcross, the chief British prosecutor at Nuremberg, and another of the founders was Peter Benenson who would later go on to found Amnesty International. Indeed, when AI first started in 1961, it shared its offices with Justice. In 1958 it became the British section of the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ).
The current chair of Justice, a charity, is Helena Kennedy QC, Baroness Kennedy of the Shaws.
Justice is a membership organisation, primarily of the legal profession, comprising barristers, solicitors, legal executives, academic lawyers, law students and interested non-lawyers, which works on an all-party basis, seeking to inform debate, frame issues and influence decision-makers from across the political spectrum.
Justice's vision is of fair, accessible and efficient legal processes, in which the individual’s rights are protected, and which reflect the country’s international reputation for upholding and promoting the rule of law.
Justice contributes to achieving its vision in three key ways:
- Providing evidence-based analysis and proposing practical solutions to law-makers, judges and relevant public servants.
- Strengthening the law and legal processes by reference to international and comparative best practice, looking across jurisdictions, across types of law and across the legal profession.
- Using the expertise of our membership to strengthen our understanding of the challenges arising in legal practice and of possible solutions, working with them to execute our vision.
Justice acts with integrity, protecting its independence, objectivity and all-party approach.
Justice aspires to excellence in all aspects of our work.
Its work is considered and practical in approach.
Justice strives to be forward looking, anticipating and setting the agenda for reform of the justice system.
Justice works collaboratively with our partners, seeking consensus where at all possible.