Created in 2005, the "Crystal Scales of Justice" Prize is a competition aimed at discovering and highlighting innovative and efficient practices concerning the functioning of justice, judicial procedures or the organisation of courts.

These practices are conducted in European jurisdictions (for example, initiatives devised by a court president, a registry, a Bar). They are drawn to the attention of policy-makers and the judicial community so as to improve the functioning of the public justice system.

The aim of the prize is to identify and promote innovative practices regarding the conduct of proceedings, court organisation and the functioning of court systems in general. To be eligible for consideration, the practices nominated must have been implemented recently and they should be easily usable by other States or jurisdictions. Their efficiency must be measurable.

  Rules and application form

* Holy See, Canada, Japan, Mexico, United States of America, Guatemala, Israël, Kazakhstan, Morocco and Tunisia.

The 11th edition of the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize has been launched on 11th January 2021. The deadline to apply was 31 March 2021.

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Ljubljana (Slovenia) 1st October 2021
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Simplified hospital complaints procedure for victims of domestic violence: French Ministry of Justice wins the Council of Europe Crystal Scales of Justice Prize

Ljubljana (Slovenia), 01.10.2021 - The French Ministry of Justice has just won the European Crystal Scales of Justice Prize for a project entitled: "Simplified filing of complaints in hospital for victims of domestic violence" [Explanation]

The 2021 European "Crystal Scales of Justice" prize, organised by the Council of Europe and rewarding innovative judicial practices within European judicial institutions, was awarded to the French Ministry of Justice on 1st October 2021 in Ljubljana (Slovenia), in the presence of Mr Zlatko Ratej, State Secretary at the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Slovenia and of Mr Christophe Poirel, Director of Human Rights of the Council of Europe, as well as the members of the jury of the competition composed of prominent personalities in the field of justice (online and in person). This event has been organised at the invitation of the Supreme Court of Slovenia, winner of the former edition of the Prize (2019).

The project "Simplified filing of complaints in hospitals for victims of domestic violence" allows investigating authorities to receive complaints from victims of domestic violence directly in medical facilities. This system strengthens the protection of victims by providing them with a simplified procedure, enabling them to lodge a complaint at the very moment and place where the violence was reported. This system is expected to be expanded across the entirety of France.

Special mentions were also awarded to the two following projects:

- A virtual quiz called "Courtbattle" and specific learning websites created for primary and secondary schools and high schools consisting of different thematic modules including a mock trial session, Denmark, Courts Administration;

- Implementation, development and strengthening of the Public Justice Centre of Odessa Region, Ukraine, Kyiv District Court of Odessa [Link to the video].

The representatives of the awarded initiatives will be invited to present their project at the CEPEJ plenary meeting in early December 2021.

The awarded initiatives of the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize will serve as subjects for Master 1 and Master 2  students of the Law Faculties, either in Council of Europe member states or in those with observer status to the CEPEJ, who wish to participate in the recently launched second edition of the Junior Crystal Scales of Justice Prize, for which applications will be received until 20 November 2021.

Watch again the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize awarding ceremony:

Previous editions Previous editions
Junior Crystal Scales of Justice Prize Junior Crystal Scales of Justice Prize

The Junior Edition of the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize complements the Crystal Scales of Justice Prize. After having put together a research and legal analysis file, highlighting the innovative aspects of one of the awarded projects of the CEPEJ Crystal Scales of Justice Prize and studying its possible transposition in another context, teams are invited to defend their case orally before the Jury.

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