investigatory and trial stages. Therefore, the increasing legal aid budget provided by the Ministry of
Justice to the Bar Association should include allocations for permanent, provincial lawyers. 114
C. Juvenile Defense Training and Awareness Campaigns
Inadequate training of legal and social justice professionals in working on juvenile cases is
another challenge. 115 While several NGOs work to train various officials, the Ministry of Justice
should implement a countrywide training program for court officials and judicial police. 116
Furthermore, there should be better educational training in law school that enables lawyers to
advocate more effectively in the courtroom for juveniles. In addition to training, there should be a
forum where legal officials can come together to discuss best practices and obstacles specifically in
the field of juvenile justice. For example, IBJ hosts roundtable discussions that bring government
officials, prosecutors, judges, prison officials, police officers and other stakeholders together to
discuss how to best implement parts of the adult Criminal Procedure Code in addition to trainings for
lawyers on numerous topics, including how to advocate using proper evidentiary procedures. 117 Due
to limited funding opportunities, many legal related NGOs face difficulties in supporting their existing
offices and must reduce their operational costs or close despite the fact that these offices are the sole
providers of legal education in many of Cambodia’s most remote areas. 118
Lastly, similar to the Street Law Program at many American law schools, there must be grassroots
education campaigns to educate Cambodian juveniles about their legal rights. 119 Enabling citizens to
stand up for their rights and share this information with others is important to community
empowerment through a bottoms-up approach. 120 While it is ideal for this class to be in person,
perhaps these classes could be conducted in innovative ways such as through social media or through
participation from local law students.
114 There are no permanent pro-bono offices in most Cambodian provinces. Currently, IBJ Cambodia is struggling to
maintain its provincial offices open due to the lack of funding from international donors. In many provinces, IBJ is the
sole provider of legal representation as many pro-bono lawyers live in Phnom Penh. Cambodia is in dire need of more
legal aid lawyers in order to answer the increasing demand of access to justice.
115 See generally Rodriguez, supra note 40.
116 An example of an NGO doing such work is IBJ who began a nationwide Legal Defense hotline and Wiki in 2013 to
increase access to legal information and representation along with another NGO, Legal Aid Cambodia. Both NGOs work
on building training partnerships in the area of domestic criminal procedure to promote law that complies with
international norms and standards while developing support for Cambodian public defender associations. John Vijghen,
Assessment of Juvenile Justice Practices in Cambodia, ACADEMIA,
http://www.academia.edu/2771317/Assessment_of_Juvenile_Justice_Practices_in_Cambodia (last visited May 6, 2016).
See also IBJ in Cambodia, Providing Countrywide Legal Protection, INT’L BRIDGES TO JUST. (2014),
IBJ in Cambodia].
117 IBJ in Cambodia, supra note 116.
118 IBJ Internal Memorandum, supra note 42.
119 Street Law aims to teach young people practical law lessons and is usually taught by law school students in low income
communities. Using this methodology, IBJ conducts rights awareness campaigns using posters, brochures, community
education events, radio call-in shows and public service announcements to help individuals understand and gain access
to their legal rights. See generally Country Programs, INT’L BRIDGES TO JUST., https://www.ibj.org/programs/country-programs/ (last visited Mar. 4, 2017).
120 Community Empowerment in Cambodia, VBNK (Sept. 9, 2016) http://www.vbnk.org/community-empowerment-cambodia/.