What Was the Legal Reforms
Legal reform or legal reform is the process of analyzing applicable laws and advocating and implementing changes in a legal system, usually with the aim of improving fairness or efficiency. There are four main methods of law reform: (a) repeal (repeal or repeal of a law), (b) creation of a new law, (c) consolidation (merging several laws into one), and (d) codification (systematic collection and disposition, usually by subject, of the laws of a state or country).1 Because of these views, Legal reforms in juvenile justice have focused on the prosecution of juveniles in criminal courts. (Allard & Young, 2002; Granello and Hanna, 2003; Grisso, 1996b). By renouncing the adult system by the youth, the juvenile faces essentially the same sentence as an adult accused of a similar crime. In addition, the procedure by which a juvenile is released in adult court has been reformed over the years. First, the juvenile court considered the individual characteristics of the young person and his or her potential for rehabilitation in the context of a waiver. Currently, however, there are laws in some states that require a juvenile to be tried in adult court only for the crime committed (Allard & Young, 2002; Grisso, 1996b). As a result, the flexibility and discretion previously used to set sentences for juvenile offenders is becoming less popular and, in some cases, almost impossible. Allard and Young (2002, p. 65) state: Given the peculiarities of historical developments in Russia, it can be argued that without large-scale legal reform, it would be extremely difficult to succeed at the same time as judicial reform. It is now necessary to start a comprehensive legal reform, which must be completed by 2020. The official public presentation and implementation of this legal reform should be primarily the responsibility of the executive and legislative branches. The legal reform programme must be adopted in the form of a legal act.
 These processes generate organizational structures and practices that respond to the law, but do little to bring about social change. Once institutionalized, these practices and norms become difficult to eliminate through subsequent legislative changes and create barriers to social change (Kelly, 2010; Albiston, 2005). For example, Kelly (2010) noted that in the United States, non-compliance with the Family and Medical Leave Act was linked to previous institutionalized practices put in place to comply with the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, even though the law had been amended to allow fathers and mothers to take leave. Organizational norms and practices that emerge around social institutions rather than legal mandates can also be difficult to change. For example, Albiston (2005) found that workers faced gender-specific resistance to family leave in line with the institutionalized stereotype of male breadwinner and housewife embodied in standard working hours, even though statutory leave rights were gender-neutral. Research that examines, analyzes and advocates the development of anti-racist legal reforms encompasses a wide range of proposals and is based on a set of ideological methods and commitments. Many approaches to anti-racist reforms build on the civil rights reforms of the 1960s in the United States and argue for expanding these reforms and/or adapting them to other national contexts (see Civil Rights; Indigenous Rights; Sexual Orientation and the Law; Law and Persons with Disabilities to obtain information on how these paradigms have been applied in other contexts). Social psychologists have argued that individuals can harbor and act on biases of which they are not aware (Banaji & Greenwald, 2013). Such “implicit” or unconscious biases are prevalent in many societies and can lead to discrimination in employment, law enforcement and other social interactions. Some legal scholars have argued that implicit bias has important implications for reform of anti-racism law (Krieger, 1995; Kang, 2012). Others dispute social science claims about implicit bias (Arks & Tetlock, 2004) and/or its importance to civil rights (Banks & Ford, 2009).
Organizational frameworks such as schools, prisons or employers are important goals of legal reforms, but the law does not automatically penetrate organizations, without costs or distortions. Neo-institutional organizational theory treats organizations as open systems that respond in complex ways to their environment, including law, which tend to establish homogeneity between organizations in the same organizational domain (Meyer and Rowan, 1977). Organizations tend to be isomorphic or similar in structure and practices because they operate according to a common system of rules—regulations, norms, and cognitive schemas—derived from a common social environment (DiMaggio & Powell, 1991). Legal institutions are part of this environment, and isomorphic processes are therefore a mechanism by which law changes society, or at least the organizations in society. The law facilitates “coercive isomorphism” by imposing similar, sanction-based legal requirements on organizations in the same field, such as: tax law rules governing the structure and activities of nonprofits (DiMaggio and Powell, 1983: p. 150). Isomorphic processes can also be “mimetic” when organizations in the same field meet ambiguous legal requirements by adopting the practices of other organizations that they find successful (Edelman, 1990). A third mechanism, “normative isomorphism,” occurs when similarly trained professionals, such as lawyers or human resource managers, propagate common practices through professional associations and then return those practices to the organizations to which they belong (DiMaggio & Powell, 1991). Legal values such as due process often provide normative guidance to professionals in determining which practices are legitimate and effective (Edelman, 1990). This approach can be understood as a logical extension of the anti-subordination approach to anti-racist legal reforms: discrimination against cultural practices does harm members of racial minorities and can be seen as part of systematic racial subordination.
2. Raising awareness of existing laws and rights related to the SDGs – Civil society organizations should raise awareness among citizens about existing laws and/or rights, including how legislation can have a positive or negative impact on achieving the SDGs. By raising public awareness, civil society organizations are more likely to gain support for legislative reform proposals. Outreach can be aimed at both members of the general population and those in positions of power, such as members of government and the judiciary. CSOs may also want to engage diverse stakeholders – such as paralegals – to help people understand the law and their rights. Another approach to anti-racist legal reform is that of non-subordination. The anti-subordination approach views racism as a set of practices that have the effect of systematically reproducing racial hierarchies, even when no identifiable decision-maker can be characterized as racial bias. Anti-subordination approaches therefore emphasize that practices that harm racial minorities should be subject to legal scrutiny, even in the absence of evidence of intent or bias. More importantly, anti-subordination approaches seek models and systems in which several distinct practices are combined to produce regular, predictable, and systematic racial subordination, even though each individual practice, considered in isolation, may not appear to be problematic (Crenshaw, 1995).
Despite the voluntary nature of the 2030 Agenda, legal reforms and policy litigation can be used to promote accountability for the SDGs. Legislative reform is key to achieving a number of specific SDG3 goals and to ensure overall coherence between a country`s national laws and the SDGs. Law reform can also be used to promote accountability for the 2030 Agenda by ensuring that there is a legal framework and a framework for citizens to hold their governments accountable for the progress of the SDGs. For example, legislative reform can be used to ensure that civil society can contribute to public policy decision-making, or that it has adequate access to judicial and other mechanisms to hold governments to account. Fighting for national reforms of pretrial detention and surveillance, police practices, public defence systems, disproportionate sentencing, abuse of prosecutorial and/or judicial power in the name of public safety, and drug policies that have failed to achieve public health while putting unprecedented numbers of people behind bars, the CLRP is working to fundamentally change the sanctions bureaucracy. by reversing the trend of incarceration. Protect constitutional rights, eliminate racism, and increase accountability and transparency in government. Americans deserve a civil lawsuit that can resolve disputes fairly and quickly for everyone – rich or poor, individuals or corporations, in cases large or small. But our civil justice system often does not meet this standard. Out-of-control costs, delays and complexity undermine public trust and rob people of the justice they seek. This needs to change.
Legal empowerment empowers people to know, apply and shape the law. It is based on a local orientation, as opposed to top-down approaches to legal reform and litigation. Legal empowerment is about strengthening the capacity of all people to exercise their rights – as individuals or as members of a community – and ensuring that the law is available and meaningful to citizens. Community empowerment is essential to legal empowerment. Strategic litigation can also be used to verify the soundness, legality, and constitutionality of public policies, laws, and official conduct regarding the implementation of the SDGs.4 In addition, strategic litigation can be used to hold a government accountable for the implementation – or lack of laws – itself.