An online steering committee meeting was held on 4 December to introduce the final results of the Project “The Istanbul Convention: a tool to advance in fighting violence against women and domestic violence in Ukraine”. Participants included the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, the National Police of Ukraine, the Office of the Commissioner of Gender Equality, the National School of Judges of Ukraine, the Coordination Centre of Free Legal Aid, the National Bar Association of Ukraine and other stakeholders. Olena Vykhor from the Ministry of Social Policy of Ukraine, and Kateryna Levchenko, Commissioner of Gender Equality expressed their appreciation for the cooperation with the Council of Europe in combating violence against women and domestic violence in Ukraine.
The Steering Committee members were introduced to the project activities and achievements, were presented project outputs and given time to ask questions directly to project staff and experts.
In its 28 months of implementation, the project has:
- Strengthened the justice system response to victims of violence against women and domestic violence through a training of trainers for 24 judges, an online HELP course on Access to Justice for Women for 26 judges and 60 lawyers, and providing technical expertise for 91 Ukrainian prosecutors.
- Reinforced legal aid to victims through training of 14 trainers, and 6 cascade trainings for 210 lawyers, with tailor-made materials including a training manual for lawyers.
- Benefitted Ukraine’s national policies and practices on violence against women and domestic violence through enhanced guidance on multi-agency risk identification and assessment through development of a Report on Risk assessment standards and methodologies, provided analysis of the Ukrainian national case law, international standards and the case law of the European Court of Human Rights through development of a Report on Court Considerations on Issuing Restraining or Protection Orders in Cases of Domestic Violence; supported Ukrainian media professionals to develop self-regulatory mechanisms to facilitate human rights-based, gender-sensitive and ethical reporting on violence against women and domestic violence through the development of Media Guidance.
- Provided comprehensive information on the Istanbul Convention through the development of a Resource toolbox, and facilitated an exchange of views and sharing of good practice and presentation of IC provisions during a Roundtable Series on the topics of Awareness Raising, Multi-agency Coordination/Data Collection, and Gender and the Media.
- Produced awareness raising materials, namely the Council of Europe’s Sexism action page and video, infographics on the 4Ps of the Istanbul Convention, a set of user-friendly information materials on the IC – infographics “Myths and facts about the Istanbul Convention” and an explanatory brochure. In addition, the infographics “Needed changes to the Ukrainian system of assistance for victims of violence against women and domestic violence” were developed, together with an explanatory brochure, as well as a video on the Myths and Facts about the Istanbul Convention.
The project Steering Committee members positively evaluated the effectiveness of the Project and its efforts to combat violence against women and domestic violence.
A potential follow-up project is currently being developed for 2021-2022.