On 18 May 2019, the Council of Europe organised a one-day training session “Providing legal aid to victims of violence against women and domestic violence” in Khmelnytskiy. The training was delivered under the project “The Istanbul Convention: a tool to advance in fighting violence against women and domestic violence in Ukraine”, in cooperation with the National Bar Association of Ukraine, the Council of Bars of Khmelnytskiy region and the Coordination Center for Legal Aid Provision of Ukraine.
Anriy Sitnikov, Deputy Head of the Council of Bars of Khmelnytskiy region, opened the training session and underscored the importance of training advocates.
The training was the first one of seven planned regional (cascade) trainings for attorneys. It gathered 28 legal professionals (among them 17 women and 11 men) who are dealing with violence against women and domestic violence in Kmelnytskiy, Ternopil and Vinnytsya regions. Training aimed to strengthen participants’ theoretical knowledge on the standards of the Council of Europe Istanbul Convention, the relevant Ukrainian legislation, the case-law of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), and the main elements of respectful and professional communication with victims.
Participants learnt about evidence collection, the cycle of violence, and multi-agency co-operation, including local resources and mechanisms to be used to support victims and how to re-direct them to specialised support services. The training also covered topics, such as a victim-centred approach and emergency barring and protective orders as new instruments to protect victims in Ukraine.
The training session was conducted by two barristers, Tamara Bugaiets and Olga Chehova.