WJP: The Twin Crises of Public Health and the Rule of Law: A World Justice Project Initiative on Rebuilding Healthy Societies

The World Justice Project is launching a multidisciplinary initiative to expand knowledge of the relationship between public health and the rule of law, and to identify measures to tackle the twin crises of the COVID-19 pandemic and the rule of law where they intersect.

The COVID-19 pandemic strikes in the midst of a mounting global rule of law crisis in which respect for key principles of good governance has been eroding in many countries for a number of years. This new pressure on the rule of law and its risk of further erosion makes the pandemic particularly dangerous. At the same time, gaps in the rule of law risk worsening the COVID-19 crisis and undermining our ability to respond effectively.

But the pandemic also presents a unique opportunity to catalyze reforms that will help rebuild the trust that citizens must have for good governance to function effectively, particularly in areas essential to fighting the pandemic and protecting public health over the long term. In this way, strengthening the rule of law is a critical building block for a healthy society and deserves priority attention and resources throughout the recovery and rebuilding phases to come.

At the intersection of these twin crises of public health and rule of law stand four main concerns: constraints on government powers, fundamental rights and discrimination, corruption, and access to justice. In the coming weeks, WJP will be sharing our latest analysis and recommendations organized across these four issue areas. Individual policy briefs will explore how we can ensure that, as our societies recover from this unprecedented global pandemic, we rebuild the fundamental rule of law pillars needed for all communities to thrive.

Read our introduction and first step toward building a research agenda, sharing knowledge, and supporting efforts to recover and rebuild effective governance founded on the rule of law here:  https://worldjusticeproject.org/news/twin-crises-public-health-and-rule-law