International Consultant to conduct a rapid assessment /mapping of existing programs/projects that support access to justice and legal aid services for women and girls in Myanmar



Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Home-based, MYANMAR
Application Deadline :29-Oct-21 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
10-Nov-2021
Duration of Initial Contract :2 months
Expected Duration of Assignment :25 days

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


Background

I.  BACKGROUND

UN Women, grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls, the empowerment of women and the achievement of equality between women and men as partners and beneficiaries of development, human rights, humanitarian action and peace and security. Placing women’s rights at the centre of all its efforts, UN Women leads and coordinates United Nations system to ensure that commitments on gender equality and gender mainstreaming translate into action throughout the world. 

UN Women is mandated to lead the UN system-wide coordination of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) Agenda, as elaborated inter-alia through UN Security Council resolutions—1325, 1820, 1888, 1889, 1960, 2106, 2122, 2242, 2467, and 2493. To this end, UN Women works with governments, UN partners, and civil society around the world to support women’s participation and influence at all levels of decision-making to prevent and resolve conflict, to protect their rights during and after conflicts and to ensure that their specific needs are addressed during repatriation, resettlement and for rehabilitation, reintegration and post-conflict reconstruction.

 

Mapping of existing access to justice and legal aid services programs/projects for women and girls in the current context in Myanmar

Myanmar is socially and politically complex in nature and when it comes to disputes and legal issues, people choose either formal or informal mechanisms depending on their cultural and/or religious background, geographic area, type of legal issues they have, and the legal mechanism available to them. According to research conducted in Myanmar, most people prefer informal justice systems or dispute settlement mechanisms, which they find more accessible, affordable, and reliable than the formal one which in contrast is too costly, time-consuming, and unfamiliar for them[1].

A number of issues that disproportionately impact women and girls, including domestic violence and gender-based violence, remain chronically underreported due to entrenched practices of discriminations by their communities. This results in the justice needs of women and girls going unmet, either through formal or informal mechanisms.  Under the current crisis, women and girls find it even more challenging to claim justice due to ambiguity in  and limitation of functioning of legal mechanisms. 

 

Many legal aid services projects/initiatives supported by international agencies and donors under the rule of law and access to justice programs have been implemented to address challenges, gaps, and barriers to justice. These initiatives focus mainly on 1) legal awareness raising in community, 2) capacity building support and trainings for formal and informal legal actors, paralegals & CSOs, and 3) provision of legal aid and referral services through legal clinics or justice centers. A number of studies have been carried out in relation to justice and legal services, as well as identifying gaps and challenges of services providers and of justice seekers for improving access and services[2].

This research will focus on mapping existing programs/projects supported by the international community/international agencies in relation to access to justice and legal aid for women and girls. The research will identify gaps  in current programming and explore opportunities for scaling up of activities focusing specifically on women’s access to justice and legal aid for women and girls in Myanmar.

 

[1] UN WOMEN and Justice Base, Voices from the Intersection: Women’s access to justice in the plural legal system of Myanmar, 2016 https://asiapacific.unwomen.org/en/digital-library/publications/2016/04/womens-access-to-justice-in-the-plural-legal-systems

My Justice, Policy Brief, Myanmar Plural’s Justice System, 2016 https://www.myjusticemyanmar.org/sites/default/files/PolicyBrief_Myanmar%E2%80%99s%20Plural%20Justice%20System.pdf

[2] See annex 1.


Duties and Responsibilities

II. SCOPE OF WORK

Under the direct supervision and guidance of the Gender and Governance programme specialist and in coordination with the dedicated team within UN Women, the consultant will be responsible for delivering a comprehensive report on existing programs/projects that support access to justice and legal aid services for women and girls, coverage of such programmes and persisting challenges and gaps so that the study can inform future program intervention or development to improve justice and legal services for women and girls in the current context in Myanmar.

Specifically, the purpose of the report is to: 

  1. Develop a mapping of existing and planned programs and projects that support access to justice and legal aid services for women and girls in Myanmar. The mapping will cover programming both at national level and local level and will also include selected urban areas that are particularly under curfew (township covered by UN urban resilience program)
  2. Investigate whether the existing and planned programs/projects are responding to the barriers and/or discrimination faced by women and girls as they seek justice (access, use of legal aid, information, assistance, representation in and out of court) based on the different legal issues, including but not limited to GBV, land disputes, trafficking in persons.
  3. Identify gaps and challenges in the initiatives (geographic coverage and program coverage/targeted population/service providers).
  4. Document best/efficient practices and approaches in the provision of legal aid services to women and girls under the current circumstances
  5. Identify and recommend interventions which help scale up access to justice based on the identified gaps.

Note: The study does not seek to identify barriers or discrimination women face in seeking justice. The mapping scope also do not include identifying different mechanisms available, but these will be discussed as and when necessary or as reported in the interviews. The study does not attempt to  evaluate the existing programmes projects.

Methodology:

       A. Desk review: comprehensive desk review of relevant resources, secondary data, press and academic articles etc.

      B. Individual interviews and online focus group discussion: Interviews with key informants from funding agencies, development partners,     INGOs and NGOs providing services and any networks and coordination mechanism if it exists) including selected urban area based service providers as mentioned above. Online focus group discussion at national and sub-national level.

The analysis of A and B will document and report on following:

  • Geographic and thematic coverage : What is the extent of coverage of existing programs/projects that support access to justice and legal aid services for women and girls in terms of geography and different entities (different formal or informal mechanisms)?
    • (For example, are most of the projects/programmes or support concentrating on one area only, such as violence against women or domestic violence? Are other areas of importance not covered, such as property rights, divorce, etc.)
    • What are legal aid services available for women and girls at different levels (National and sub-national) and urban areas (townships) under curfew
  • Relevance: How do existing programs/projects on access to justice support or address the constraints, barriers and discrimination women and girls face when they pursue their rights?
  • Challenges of service provision (programme project implementation) in the current context and marginalized groups/community: What are the gaps and challenges of existing programs/projects in terms of geographic and program coverage, target populations, including marginalised groups such as women and girls with disabilities, and service provision (that remain to be dealt with) in the current context? And what are the best practices and approaches?
  • Coping mechanism in the current context: How do lawyers, paralegals, CSOs, legal aid initiatives support and promote the needs of women and girls’ access to justice and legal services in the current crisis situation? Specially in the selected townships under curfew? what are the challenges and gaps they have or foresee to have in their service provision in the current crisis situation?
  • Recommendations: What are the areas of interventions and support needed for women and girls to increase their access to justice, and legal aid services in the current situation?

 

The findings from this research will be used to create content that can be adapted and used for a variety of purposes such as briefings, policy papers, and future programs development by UN Women. 

Activity and timeline: 25 days for international  contract intermittently between 10 November 2021 to 15 January 2022

 

III. Deliverables:

 

Phase

Deadline

Expected delivery and date (International Consultant)-25 days

Deliverables 1

Task:

  • Inception Report with a detailed workplan and timeline
  • Desk review
  • Study Design and questionnaire (Semi structured)
  • Data and information storage plan for safety security
  • Risk Analysis and mitigation

 

   15/11/2021 

5 days

Deliverable 2

Task:

  • Two focus group interviews  – one at Union level (funding agencies/international agencies) and another at State/Region level (service providers/CSOs)
  • Interviews
  • Short workshop proceedings

20/12/2021

 

 

13days

 

2 days refine questions and prepare list of interviewees and focus group discussion participants

 

2 days focus group online discussion

 

9 days interviews

Deliverable 3

Task:

  • Draft Report and incorporation of feedback
  • Final Report submission

 

05 /01/2022

7 days

 

 

 

 


Competencies

IV.  COMPETENCIES

Core Values:

  • Respect for Diversity
  • Integrity
  • Professionalism

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues
  • Accountability
  • Conflict sensitivity
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Effective Communication
  • Inclusive Collaboration
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Leading by Example

Please visit this link for more information on UN Women’s Core Values and Competencies: http://www.unwomen.org/-/media/headquarters/attachments/sections/about%20us/employment/un-women-employment-values-and-competencies-definitions-en.pdf


Required Skills and Experience

V.  Required skills and experiences:

Qualification Criteria:

  • Minimum Master’s degree in law, social science, gender, political science, or related subjects
  • More than 7 years of experience in research and report writing
  • Thorough understanding of Gender and legal issues and Track record of research and reports on related subject
  • Understanding of political context and sensitivity and experience of working in sensitive political environment
  • Experience of working with UN agencies is of an advantage
  • Fluency in English
  • Experience of working in Myanmar is of added advantage

 

VI. Payment arrangements 

Payment will be provided as per completion of the different deliverables as indicated above

 

VII. The Application Process

Interested candidates are requested to submit electronic application to  UNDP Job link https://jobs.undp.org/cj_view_job.cfm?cur_job_id=92467  and copy to hr.myanmar@unwomen.org no later than 29th October 2021. The submission package includes:

 

  • Offeror's letter to UN Women confirming interest and availability for the assignment.
  • Personal History Form (P11), which can be downloaded from https://www.unwomen.org/en/about-us/employment/application-process
  • Financial proposal*, indicating a total lump sum to include all costs relating to the delivery of outputs as per above description.

 

VIII. Evaluation

Applications will be evaluated based on the Cumulative analysis.

  • Technical Qualification (100 points) weight: 70%
  • Financial Proposal (100 points) weight: 30%

A two-stage procedure is utilised in evaluating the proposals, with evaluation of the technical proposal being completed prior to any financial proposal being compared. Only the financial proposals of the candidates who passed the minimum technical score of 70% of the obtainable score of 100 points in the technical qualification evaluation will be evaluated.

 

 

 

 



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