Brasilien: Sueli Pereira Pini

I believe in the humanization of justice. I really love what I do.

— Sueli Pereira Pini

Sueli Pereira Pini (born 1960) is a judge of law and coordinator of the Juizado Especial Central Cível e Criminal da Comarca de Macapá (Special Civil Court of Macapá), the capital of Amapá. Her work is of great relevance since it helps guarantee universal access to justice. She is ahead of innovative projects. Among them is the ‘itinerant justice’–a project that helps citizens in public squares, in extremely poor neighborhoods, in places hidden in the forest. She also develops the Preventive Justice at School Program.

Sueli Pereira Pini's philosophy is very clear: “Justice is there to be made.” But how can this service be rendered in settlements spread throughout the forest? Well, if the people cannot go to justice, justice will come to them. The road that leads the court with the judge inside of it is the river. Torrential and fanciful, the Amazon River navigates the boat that makes stops in every settlement. The Ribeirinhos (people who live near the river) line up and wait for their turn to talk to Judge Sueli. She listens to everyone who comes to the fluvial courtroom. They want to solve conflicts or they want to have access to their basic rights as citizens, for example, to get their birth certificates. Sueli does not only work in the boat. She also works in the miserable districts of Macapá. She demands infrastructural improvements from the mayor. She writes official letters claiming for everything that is of their right. “In order to pay the salary of public servants, the State takes away food from the mouths of many people. We have the obligation to do our work and to do it well.” For Sueli Pereira Pini, a true judicial reform has to begin with the judges' attitude: “More important than giving a verdict is seeking a negotiation between the parties involved. More important than analyzing the paper work of the case is listening to the people.” Mother of six children, she jumps out of bed very early and goes to work. She argues that inclusion is the most efficient way to minimize violence. She believes that justice needs essentially to be preventive. Sueli and her team go to classrooms. They talk about the judiciary's role, about the importance of human rights, and especially about the efficiency of dialogue in the resolution of conflicts.

Juizado Especial Central Cível e Criminal da Comarca de Macapá