News - June 2012

Okrugli stol Zagreb- 11 – 12 June, 2012, Zagreb: Representative of the Center for Peace - Vukovar, Mr. Branislav Tekic attended a roundtable discussion on "Experiences in implementing the Law on Free Legal Aid - The Role of Free Legal Aid in combating discrimination. The roundtable discussion was held within the framework of the two year’s IPA 2008 project "The Initiative of Civil Society Organizations for Changes in Anti-Discrimination Policies" (2011 - 2013) and organized by the Centre for Peace, Nonviolence and Human Rights partners with partners: Center for Peace, Legal Advice and Psychosocial Assistance - Vukovar and Serbian Democratic Forum. The round table is intended to open communication between the civil and public sectors on the status and problems recognized in the implementation of the Law on Free Legal Aid, as well as possibilities and opportunities for finding common measures to address them. In addition, it will be an opportunity to present the Report on monitoring the implementation of the Law on Free Legal Aid in the prevention of discrimination, for analysis and comparison of current practice in providing legal assistance following the recent legislative changes, the debate about the effectiveness of the system of legal aid as a preventive mechanism to combat discrimination by various types of discrimination, and to define conclusions and guidelines for activities aimed at improving the legal framework. The round table was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Justice, the EU Delegation in the Republic of Croatia, Office for Cooperation with NGOs of the Croatian Government, the Office of the Ombudsman, UNHCR, NGOs from Croatian and the region. As a result of the implementation of project activities, the document "Monitoring the implementation of the Law on Free Legal Aid in combating discrimination (Report for 2011)” was publicly presented during this event.

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- 4 June, 2012, Vinkovci: Representative of the Center for Peace - Vukovar, Mr. Drago Pepic, participated in the third public consultation organized by the Croatian Institute for Local Government (HILS) in partnership with Vukovar-Srijem County, within the framework of the project "Scanning equality" with the aim of strengthening the capacity of civil society of OCD in Vukovar-Srijem County for monitoring public policies related to national minorities. As part of this project, training sessions and two public consultations were organized on the topic of obligations of Council and representatives of national minorities and ethnic minorities, and associations of national minorities and on the topic of elections for the councils and representatives of national minorities, as well as the employment of national minorities. The topic of the 3rd Public consultation was identification, reporting and prosecution of discrimination, with a focus on discrimination on grounds of nationality. Mr. Pepic, legal adviser at the Center for Peace, Legal Advice and Psychosocial Assistance - Vukovar, gave a presentation on this subject, referring to the Law on Combating Discrimination. Mr. Pepic spoke of possibilities and methods of protection from all forms of discrimination, in this case, discrimination on ethnic grounds with special reference to the possibility of employing persons belonging to national minorities. Through discussion, specific cases of discrimination presented by the participants were analyzed.

- 31 May – 1 June, 2012, Zagreb: Representatives of the Center for Peace - Vukovar, Mr. Branislav Tekic and Mr. Drago Pepic, attended the second training for regional anti-discrimination contact points. Topics of the training were: working on cases - dealing with complaints; the role of regional anti-discrimination contact points within the Croatian anti-discrimination framework; diversity in business world - case studies; preparation of the training with employers; ways of continuing cooperation after the project completion. The training was held within the framework of the project "PROGRESS" - Equal in Diversity, which is carried out by the Croatian Employment Service (CES) in collaboration with the Office of the Ombudsman, with the financial support from the European Commission.