What is the Coastal Justice Network?

The Coastal Justice Network is a growing network of small scale fisher leaders, environmental justice organizations and researchers responding collaboratively to a range of injustices along the South African Coastline.

Who is the Coastal Justice Network?

Currently, this network is being supported and coordinated by a group of scholar-activists based at the Environmental Learning Research Centre at Rhodes University, Environmental and Geographic Sciences at the University of Cape Town, the Urban Futures Centre at the Durban University of Technology and Nelson Mandela University, all through the UKRI funded Global Challenges Research Fund project ‘The One Ocean Hub’.

We work alongside small scale fisher organisations, SSF co-operatives, and other coastal community based organisations and movements

We also work in collaboration with Empatheatre, and other civil society organisations such as SDCEA (South Durban Community Environmental Alliance), Green Connection, Masifundise Development Trust, the Legal Resources Centre, Oceans Not Oil and others.

We aim, as a network, to work towards an alternative to the extractive Blue Economy,
in which marginalised coastal people, and the marine environments upon
which they depend and for which they are the rightful custodians,
are at the heart of ocean governance.


How do we do this?

Our main mode of communication and organising is via a funded Whatsapp group, as well as in-person meetings when possible, which we use to:

– enable rapid response to rights violations; – connect activists to pro bono legal support; – offer support services such as writing of press releases, writing letters to government officials, translating policies and plans; – advocating for inclusion of community based activists in public consultations – developing popular education materials such as animations or pamphlets to amplify and unpack coastal justice perspectives – mapping of Blue Economy activities and sites of struggle;  – Insider-outsider approach to governmental engagement

… as well as social learning and story-telling processes with fellow researchers and policy makers to raise awareness and build solidarity with community based social movements.

Small scale fishers solidarity

We add and contribute to formations that have been active for 30 years of post apartheid work to realise justice and reconciliation for fishers.

We work alongside small scale fisher organisations to support their own mobilising, work and vision, and to open spaces and opportunities together for participatory decision making, learning exchanges, organisational development, legal advice, and solidarity actions between these different grassroots organisations and others working for environmental and social justice.

Have questions?

Read our latest news