Barnahus: a European journey - Findings of a mapping study on multidisciplinary and interagency child-friendly justice models responding to violence against children
Public event organised jointly by the Steering Committee for the Rights of the Child (CDENF) and the Lanzarote Committee
28 September 2023, Strasbourg and online
On 28 September 2023, the Steering Committee for the Rights of the Child (CDENF) and the Lanzarote Committee (i.e. Committee of the Parties to the Council of Europe Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse) will host a public event to present main findings and conclusions of a Mapping study on multidisciplinary and interagency child-friendly justice models responding to violence against children in Council of Europe member states.
The study has been prepared by the Children’s Rights Division of the Council of Europe, under Priority 4 of the Strategy for the Rights of the Child (2022-2027) thanks to a voluntary contribution by the Icelandic Government. It is part of the Council of Europe’s broader efforts to promote the Barnahus* model in order to ensure that the best interests of the child are upheld in investigations and criminal proceedings, and to provide support for child victims and witnesses of sexual and other forms of violence in a child-friendly and safe environment, thus making child-friendly justice a true reality.
The event will explore the potential of Barnahus in Europe, including interventions from representatives of Council of Europe member states of national experiences of multidisciplinary and interagency structures, as well as question and answer sessions. The Chairpersons of the CDENF and the Lanzarote Committee will also present relevant initiatives on Barnahus.
The event will take place in Strasbourg and online and will be livestreamed in English and French.
* Barnahus is the leading European response model for child sexual abuse that coordinates parallel criminal and child welfare investigations, brings all relevant services under one roof, and thus helps avoid secondary victimisation of the child.
The Barnahus model was first launched in Europe in Iceland in 1998. In 2015, the Council of Europe’s Committee of the parties to the convention on the protection of children against sexual exploitation and sexual abuse (Lanzarote Convention) has recognised the model as a promising practice, and since then, the Council of Europe has been supporting its member states in adapting and using it. With the Council of Europe and EU support, the first Children’s House facility was opened in May 2022 in Slovenia. Similar joint projects in Croatia, Finland, Ireland and Spain are ongoing.