In Burundi, the research upon which this report is based suggests that there are few viable, legally authorized local justice and security providers. On the other hand, workplace associations exist and provide justice and safety to their constituent members; to the customers who avail themselves of their labor, as well as their goods; and the owners of the capital on or with which the workers labor.
Donor support for these associations, therefore, could markedly improve the delivery of actual justice and security services to clearly defined populations, most of who are among the most marginalized and vulnerable. Donor support may also further augment the social efficacy of the workplace associations’ membership, a key indicator in reducing insecurity and violence.
The report recommends that donors initiate justice and security projects to strengthen and support workplace associations, particularly the Cyclist Association and Trade Union, with its 16,000 members nationwide, and the Palm Oil Guards Association in the province of Bururi. Providing support to workplace associations opens up a new possibility for donor support in justice and security development, one that has up to this point been, largely, untouched and unexplored.
The report forms part of a larger Clingendael Conflict Research Unit research project examining the role of non-state actors in security and justice service delivery, and the options for donors to support the delivery of justice and security services through them as part of larger Security Sector Reform programming. The entire project entails a conceptual paper (published in July 2009), three case studies (Colombia, DR Congo and Burundi) and a synthesis report bringing together the most important practical lessons for donors (expected early 2012).