To strengthening the pro bono ecosystem of local actors working to advance access to justice for refugees and others forcibly displaced, PILnet and its partners are supporting the development and implementation of a national-level pro bono coordination mechanism on refugee rights in Thailand hosted by Refugee Rights Litigation Project (RRLP). This pilot project is the first of its kind to be developed in line with the objectives of the Global Refugee Forum Legal Community Pledge (the Pledge) to take a multi-stakeholder and partnership approach to increasing access to legal assistance for refugees and others forcibly displaced around the globe.
Beginning in early 2021, PILnet, the Pledge Core Group, and other partners initiated an intensive scoping exercise in Thailand engaging relevant NGOs, community-based organizations (CBOs), lawyers, refugee-led organizations (RLOs), refugee communities, and others. This exercise identified both a gap in access to justice for refugees and an interest from Thai lawyers to address those gaps, so PILnet organized consultative workshops to discuss the finding and develop a pilot project that would be hosted by
PILnet and RRLP have build a large network of pro bono lawyers, provided training on relevant law and sharing sessions with refugees, and hosted roundtables to further the discussion on how to address legal needs of refugees. The project also established a coordination mechanism to match specific legal requests with a suitable lawyer on a pro bono basis.