chapter  5
18 Pages

Serving Justice: Fairness

As we’ve discussed in the chapters on Benefi t and Effectiveness, we want to know that a policy, or proposed policy, effectively produces a societal benefi t. But we need to know more to approve of that policy. It is not enough that a policy passes a cost-benefi t test. We want to believe that a policy is fair. At a general level, fairness means giving people what they are due, what they deserve. It means that they are treated equitably, without prejudice or bias. Like cases are treated alike. Fairness requires that goods and services (as well as costs, burdens and risks) be distributed fairly.