Learning together : Regional online course "Fight against Racism, Xenophobia, Homophobia and Transphobia"

STRASBOURG 28 May 2020
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Photo by Bram Naus on Unsplash

Photo by Bram Naus on Unsplash

Seventy-five participants from equality bodies, Ombudsperson institutions, NGOs and public agencies from the Eastern Partnership (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Republic of Moldova, Ukraine) participate in a regional HELP course on fighting racism, xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia. The online course will develop their capacities to effectively combat discrimination, using existent redress mechanisms and international standards. The course will also be an opportunity to learn about good practices and network to fight discrimination in the Eastern Partnership. The course includes exercises and case studies related to the analysis of the national situation, expert talks, online discussions and interaction.

This model HELP online course in English was developed in the framework of the HELP Programme, under the EU funded Project “HELP in the 28” (2015-2017).


Course objectives

  • Develop participants’ knowledge of the concepts and manifestations of racism, xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia and approaches to fight against them
  • Develop participants’ understanding of redress to discrimination, existing standards at European level and mechanisms present at national level
  • Improve participants’ skills to offer support to victims of discrimination
  • Develop an informal regional network for cooperation and exchange of practices on the fight against racism, xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia among the Eastern Partnership countries.

The national partners of the course are the Human Rights Defender’s Office of the Republic of Armenia, the Commissioner for Human Rights of Azerbaijan, the National centre of legislation and legal research of the Republic of Belarus, the Public Defender’s Office of Georgia, the Council for Preventing and Eliminating Discrimination and Ensuring Equality and the People’s Advocate/Ombudsman of the Republic of Moldova, and the Commissioner for Human Rights, Ukraine.

The online course is implemented in the framework of the regional project “Strengthening access to justice through non-judicial redress mechanisms for victims of discrimination, hate crime and hate speech in Eastern Partnership countries”, financed by the European Union and the Council of Europe and implemented by the Council of Europe in their Partnership for Good Governance phase II.


Public launch of the course

The public launch of the course, organised on 18 May 2020, served as an opportunity to discuss developments in the field of prohibition of discrimination and promotion of equality in the Eastern Partnership countries.

It was opened by Irena Guidikova, Head of the Inclusion and Anti-discrimination Division, Anti-discrimination Department, Council of Europe; Arkadi Sytine, PGG Coordinator, Programming Department, Office of the Directorate General of Programmes, Council of Europe; and Nicholas Cendrowicz, Deputy Head of Unit, DG NEAR, European Commission.

Contributions on the prohibition of discrimination and the role of the European Court of Human Rights and the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance were provided by Judge Gilberto Felici, Judge of the European Court of Human Rights, and Stefano Valenti, External Relations Officer, European Commission against Racism and Intolerance, Council of Europe.

A specific introduction to the online course, the Council of Europe Programme on Human Rights Education for Legal Professionals (HELP), to the international tutors and to the national delegations completed the event.