Back Discussing priorities in strengthening the role of the Ombudsperson of Ukraine as national equality body

Discussing priorities in strengthening the role of the Ombudsperson of Ukraine as national equality body

On 30 January 2023, the Council of Europe’s Director of Anti-Discrimination, Jeroen Schokkenbroek, met with the Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights (Ombudsperson) Dmytro Lubinets in the context of a visit to the Council of Europe Headquarters in Strasbourg, France.

Issues discussed included the challenges of the Ombudsperson as independent human rights institution, adapting its mandate to the situation caused by the Russian aggression against Ukraine. Points raised covered the rights of children during conflict; displacement issues; discrimination against citizens moving from one region to another in the country; rights of persons belonging to national minorities; and how to ensure presence in all regions to monitor and act upon cases of discrimination.

Director Schokkenbroek encouraged the Ombudsperson and his staff to continue cooperating with services within the Directorate to ensure that the rights of all minorities are protected in line with European standards. He stressed the importance of the work carried out by the Steering Committee on Anti-Discrimination, Diversity and Inclusion (CDADI), the monitoring bodies such as the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) and those acting in the area of minority protection. He particularly emphasised the key role of technical cooperation through anti-discrimination programmes and projects.

Ombudsperson Lubinets recalled the importance of continuously benefitting from the assistance of the Council of Europe to ensure the implementation of the reforms related to the rights of national minorities and Roma, as well as to improve the capacity of his Office to deal with discrimination issues, especially when monitoring related violations in times of conflict.

The meeting continued at the technical level, discussing programmatic priorities of the No Hate Speech and Co-operation Unit and Ukraine as part of the Council of Europe Action Plan for Ukraine “Resilience, Recovery and Reconstruction” (2023-2026). Currently, two projects are being implemented: a voluntary contribution project on “Support the reform of the national minority legal framework and the resilience of national minorities and Roma in Ukraine” and a component of the EU-CoE funded regional project “Strengthening the access to justice through non-judicial redress mechanisms for victims of discrimination, hate crime and hate speech in Eastern Partnership countries”. 

Strasbourg, France 30 January 2023
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