News - October 2014

 

- 15 October 2014, Zagreb: Public presentation of the Civil Society Monitoring Report on the Implementation of the National Roma Integration Strategy and Decade Action Plan in the Republic of Croatia in 2012 and 2013 was organized at the Europe House in Zagreb. On behalf of the coalition of organizations involved in its preparation, the Report was presented by Stojan Obradovic, project coordinator (STINA Institute), Ljubomir Mikic, principal researcher (Center for Peace - Vukovar) and Bibijana Papo, collaborator on the project (Roma National Council).

 

- 11 - 12 October 2014, Krk: Representatives of the Center for Peace - Vukovar, Ljubomir Mikic and Branislav Tekic, participated in the practical application of the model of the deliberative polling as a method of deliberative democracy developed by the Center for Deliberative Democracy of the Stanford University (USA). Conference titled "Deliberation: the future of democracy? - Exercising the rights of minorities: integration or conflict and division" was organized within the framework of activities carried out within the project "Let the citizens' voice be heard / Polling voices - Citizens debate and advocate for sustainable social change” carried out by the Center for Peace Studies (Zagreb), Institute of Public Finance (Zagreb), the Serb National Council (Zagreb), Youth Association from Dalj and external collaborators from the Stanford University (USA).

This method is an attempt to utilize public opinion surveys and debates involving citizens in a new and constructive manner: it involves citizens selected as a representative sample to participate in debates regarding important political issues, while the key moment is that aside of the debate citizens get expert information about the issue at hand and the political views of all interested parties. Selected citizens, along with experts and political leaders, discussed the topic of exercising minority rights, with an emphasis on bilingualism, and adopted conclusions and recommendations intended for decision-makers. The method of practical application of deliberation indicated that when citizens have sufficient information and opportunities for a reasoned exchange of opinions they can reach conclusions that are not solely based on ideological or irrational grounds and change their opinions and attitudes in relation to facts presented and explained to them.

 

- 2 October 2014, Warsaw (Poland): Representatives of the informal regional network of NGOs participating in the project "Fostering NGO Human Rights Network in the Western Balkans Region" organized a side event at the annual OSCE ODIHR Human Dimension Implementation Meeting. The event was dedicated to issues of access to rights for migrants through registration of their legal residency.

At the event, a joint regional NGO network's document Determination of Residence Status of Displaced Persons in Western Balkans Countries - Prerequisite for Access to and Exercise of Rights was presented. Keynote speakers and panelists on behalf of the network were Mr. Vladimir Petronijević, representative of the Group 484 from Serbia; Mr. Emir Prcanović and Mr. Nedim Kapetanović, representatives of the organization "Your Rights" from Bosnia and Herzegovina; Mr. Ljubomir Mikić, representative of the Center for Peace, Legal Advice and Psychosocial Assistance – Vukovar from Croatia.

The document can be found here.

- October 2014, Split: The publication, "The development of media responsibility for further strengthening of social integration of Roma" is a manual for vocational training for journalists in the local media for the purpose of better media coverage of Roma issues and Roma activists and their better performances and work in the media. Released in October 2014, the manual covers topics related to the media campaigning for exercising minority rights, the role and opportunities of the media to overcome prejudices about the Roma, ways of using the media channels for promoting Roma interests and needs and possibilities of local radio stations in the development of media project related to national minorities. The authors of this publication are Stjepan Malovic, retired professor of journalism and communications, Gordana Vilović, professor of journalism and communications at the Faculty of Political Science at the University of Zagreb, Srdjan Dvornik, publicist and the facilitator of the National Strategy for Roma Inclusion by 2020, Radenko Udovicic, media expert and head of the Association Media Initiatives from Sarajevo, Antun Bradjasevic, media and civic activists and Ljubomir Mikic, senior consultant and expert on national minorities at the Center for Peace - Vukovar.