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European Victims of Crime Day (22 February)

On the occasion of the European Victims of Crime Day (22 February 2019) Pro Igual reminds that all victims of hate crime in Spain, irrespective of their legal status, can anonimously share their experiences through its hate crimes survey. There [...]

odio2019

Pro Igual Resumes Surveying Hate Crimes in Spain

Pro Igual resumes its initiative to survey individual experiences with hate crime in Spain. If you were a victim or witness of a hate crime, or know someone who was, please help us monitor the scope of the phenomenon by taking part [...]

brexitrights

Deal or no deal: the rights that will be lost with Brexit

By Claudia Delpero in collaboration with Anthony Valcke, Founder and Supervising Solicitor of the EU Rights Clinic of which Pro Igual is a member. © All rights reserved. Available on: https://europestreet.news/deal-or-no-deal-the-rights-that-will-be-lost-with-brexit/ Deal or no deal? That is the question. Despite the [...]

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New social media campaign for European Day of Victims of Crime

Victim Support Europe (VSE) is preparing to launch a social media campaign in recognition of European Day For Victims of Crime with the overall aim – to make victims’ legal rights a reality on practice. The action seeks to improve the [...]

nameleschild

Child without a name

Hanna is five years old. She drew this picture of the happy family she wishes for. Her mother named her Hanna but her name is nowhere officially recognised; to the German authorities, she is a nameless child. She was born [...]

 

European Victims of Crime Day (22 February)

VictimOfCrimeDayPic

On the occasion of the European Victims of Crime Day (22 February 2019)

Pro Igual reminds that all victims of hate crime in Spain, irrespective of their legal status, can anonimously share their experiences through its hate crimes survey.

There must never be crimes without consequences, or victims without voices. Everyone should be able to report without fear.

We would also like to present explainer prepared by PICUM (in which Pro Igual participates) for law enforcement actors on The Rights of Undocumented Victims of Crime: What to Know If You’re a Police Officer (available in English, Spanish or German.)

 

Pro Igual Resumes Surveying Hate Crimes in Spain

odio2019

Pro Igual resumes its initiative to survey individual experiences with hate crime in Spain. If you were a victim or witness of a hate crime, or know someone who was, please help us monitor the scope of the phenomenon by taking part in our online survey on hate crimes in Spain, and sharing the link among your contacts and networks. The 2019 survey is available in Spanish. All responses are strictly confidential. Thank you for your help!

Deal or no deal: the rights that will be lost with Brexit

brexitrights

By Claudia Delpero in collaboration with Anthony Valcke, Founder and Supervising Solicitor of the EU Rights Clinic of which Pro Igual is a member. © All rights reserved. Available on: https://europestreet.news/deal-or-no-deal-the-rights-that-will-be-lost-with-brexit/

Deal or no deal? That is the question. Despite the promise that nothing will change for them, both EU nationals living in the UK and British residents in the rest of the EU are to lose out from Brexit. The situation could even be worsened if there is no agreement on the terms of the UK’s departure from the European Union. The failure of talks at the EU summit in Salzburg this week did not offer assurances in this regard, leaving people whose status depends on EU treaties in a troubling state of uncertainty.

This is an overview of what can happen to the rights of 3.7 million EU citizens who are living in the UK and 1.2 million British citizens who are living in another EU country after Brexit. As inconceivable as it was before the EU referendum, the overview shows the rights preserved and lost under the draft “deal” published in March and in the event of “no deal”.

In short, the right to family reunion, the ability to exercise professional activities across countries and to participate in political life, will be weakened under the draft withdrawal agreement. But in the case of “no deal”, there will be even heavier consequences in terms of potential loss of acquired pension rights, free or subsidised healthcare when travelling and ability to provide services across borders. Read more…

New social media campaign for European Day of Victims of Crime

VSEbanner22feb

Victim Support Europe (VSE) is preparing to launch a social media campaign in recognition of European Day For Victims of Crime with the overall aim – to make victims’ legal rights a reality on practice. The action seeks to improve the access to victim support services in member states and to encourage victims to reach out the support services. The “Make Victims’ Legal Rights a Reality” campaign is expected to launch on February 12 and will continue till February 22: European Day For Victims of Crime. Read more…

Child without a name

nameleschild

Hanna is five years old. She drew this picture of the happy family she wishes for.

Her mother named her Hanna but her name is nowhere officially recognised; to the German authorities, she is a nameless child. She was born in Cologne, and has always lived there. She knows no other country than Germany but has been considered an undocumented migrant all her life. To read Hanna’s full story, click here.

Hanna’s story is part of PICUM’s series of testimonies and stories of undocumented children and youth. PICUM, in which Pro Igual participates, regularly publishes stories and quotes in written form or through multimedia in the run-up to Universal Children’s day in November. The series aims to give a voice to children and young people as well as to their parents, caregivers and supporting organisations to show the realities undocumented children and youth face across Europe. Testimonies are available in English, French and Spanish and can also be shared through social media. #ShareYourStory

110 NGOs Condemn New ‪EU‬ Migration Response Plan #StayHuman

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The European Union is set to open a dark chapter in its history unless it rejects the European Commission’s proposal on migration, a coalition of more than 100 NGOs warned on Monday. Shifting towards a foreign policy that serves the single objective of curbing migration, the EU and its member states risk further undermining their credibility and authority in the defence of human rights, the organizations say. They call on European leaders to reject the Commission proposal that would cement this approach, making deterrence and return of people the main objective of the EU’s relationship with third countries.

The plan proposes using aid, trade and other funds to encourage countries to reduce the number of migrants reaching EU shores. It was put forward by the Commission at the beginning of June and will be discussed by European heads of state and government at the EU summit in Brussels this week. It is inspired by the EU-Turkey deal which has left thousands of people stranded in Greece in inhumane and degrading conditions. Children are particularly affected, with many hundreds of unaccompanied children being held in closed detention facilities or forced to sleep in police cells.

According to the coalition of 110 human rights, humanitarian, medical, migration and development agencies, Europe risks torpedoing human rights in its foreign policy, and undermining the right to asylum internationally. There are no safeguards envisaged to ensure that human rights, rule of law standards and protection mechanisms are in place when the EU strikes deals with governments it deems useful for stopping migration to Europe. This leaves a very real risk of breach of international law which forbids pushbacks to places where people are at risk of rights violations. “Responsibility and liability for human rights violations do not end at Europe’s borders,” the statement reads.

Also, the proposal discussed ignores all the evidence that deterrence strategies aimed at stopping migration are ineffective. The EU’s current approach will not only fail to ‘break the business-model’ of smugglers but will increase human suffering as people will be forced into taking more dangerous routes to reach Europe.

The NGO coalition is very concerned that the proposal will result in a wholesale reorientation of Europe’s development aid towards stopping migration. “This is an unacceptable contradiction to the EU’s commitment to use development cooperation with the aim of eradicating poverty,” the statement reads.

The organisations warn that striking ‘migration management’ agreements with countries where grave human rights violations are committed will be counter-productive in the longer term. Such deals will be “undermining human rights around the globe and perpetuating the cycle of abuse and repression that causes people to flee,” they say.

The NGOs call on the European leaders to reject the Commission proposal on migration. Instead, European countries should develop a sustainable long-term strategy for migration management. “The EU, a project built on the rubble of a devastating war, is about to embark on a dark chapter of its history,” the organizations warn in their joint statement.

 

To read the full joint statement and a view the list of the 110 signatories click HERE.

The European Commission Communication on a new Partnership Framework with third countries is available HERE.

 

Suggested Amendments to the Proposal for an EU Regulation on the European Border and Coast Guard to strengthen compliance with fundamental rights

Credit: Banksy?

Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM), in which Pro Igual participates, suggests the attached amendments to the proposal for a Regulation on the European Border and Coast Guard in order to strengthen compliance with fundamental rights in the proposal.

PICUM is a member of the Frontex Consultative Forum on Fundamental Rights which provides independent advice to the Agency’s Management Board as well as its Executive Director on fundamental rights matters. The Consultative Forum is composed of 15 organisations: The AIRE Centre, Amnesty International European Institutions Office, Caritas Europa, Churches’ Commission for Migrants in Europe (CCME), Council of Europe, European Asylum Support Office (EASO), European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE), European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), International Organization for Migration (IOM), Jesuit Refugee Service Europe (JRS), Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe/Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR), Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM), Red Cross EU Office and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Summary of the suggested amendments is included below, while the full text is available here.

  • Fundamental rights as integral to role of the Agency and integrated border management

> E.g. Article 1, Article 4 (definition of integrated border management), Article 7 (tasks of the Agency)

> Risk analyses (Article 10) and vulnerability assessments (Article 12) should look at access to procedures and fundamental rights

> Operational cooperation with authorities on coast guard functions only in line with the tasks of the Agency and international and Union law (Article 52)

  • Fundamental rights safeguards before initiating operations

> Fundamental rights assessment prior to any operational engagement (Article 10, Article 12, Article 18, Article 27, Article 53)

> Return Office should not provide information on third countries of return, and should provide information to support only lawful deprivation of liberty (wording more likely to get in this way than saying ATD outright here) (Article 26)

> No Agency involvement in deportations from member states not implementing EU law on asylum and return (Article 27)

> No deportations from one third country to another (‘mixed return operations’) – this new activity is not compatible with fundamental rights and should be deleted (Article 27.4).

> Non-refoulement not only linked to international protection but all human rights law and more clearly defined (Article 33)

  • Fundamental rights safeguards during operations

> Detailed FR provisions in operational plans and link to power to suspend or terminate operations (Article 15)

> Power to suspend or terminate operations – criteria to be developed, FRO can suggest, should be for all operations (propose to move Article 36 General rules) (Article 24)

> Also operational plans with monitoring and complaints procedures, and FR safeguards, for return operations (Article 27) and operational cooperation with third countries (Article 53)

> Forced return monitors independent and report to Agency and FRO (Article 28); forced return monitors and escorts with child protection profiles (Article 28 and 29)

> Use of force must comply with international and EU human rights law, as well as national law (Article 39)

  • Complaints mechanism

> Officers wear visible numbers/ codes allowing individual identification (Article 39.4)

> Independence of the mechanism, involvement of competent bodies on national level, clear time periods and procedure, information about the procedure and support including for children, right to appeal decisions on admissibility, link to the civil and criminal process as well as disciplinary actions (Article 72)

  • Fundamental rights structure in the Agency

> Shared responsibility – includes responsibility for fundamental rights (Article 5)

> Fundamental Rights Strategy – stronger HR references, includes monitoring mechanism (was in previous Frontex Regulation, but weak here) and complaints mechanism, reference back to fundamental rights assessment prior to operations and in operational plans (Article 33)

> Stronger requirement to consider recommendations of the Fundamental Rights Officer and Consultative Forum and transparency (Article 33.4)

> Liability of the Agency – more information on liability, remedies, and legal aid (Article 59), also considering expanded competences of guest officers (Article 39.9) and taking into account relevant jurisprudence on immunity (Article 58)

> Consultative Forum – ensure independence (Article 60, Article 70), access to information and resources (Article 70)

> Fundamental Rights Officer – ensure independence (Article 60), reporting to the Consultative Forum and resources (Article 71)

> Evaluation – should include fundamental rights and be for all operations (propose to move to Article 37) (Article 25)

  • Search and rescue

> Should be part of integrated border management (Article 4) and the tasks of the Agency (Article 7)

  • Hotspots

> Should be coordinated by the Commission, involve FR and child protection experts, stronger on compliance with FR in all activities, including providing information on FR and procedures (under guidance of EASO and FRA) and referrals, providing for basic needs (Article 17)

  • Cooperation with third countries

> Nature of cooperation with third countries well defined and be made public (Article 53)

Detailed amendments have not been included on data protection. PICUM strongly urges that the recommendations of the Data Protection Supervisor be followed. The purpose and type of data to be accessed and processed must be specified at all times.

Further, the proposal will have significant legal, practical and financial implications, and so should not be adopted without due consultation with relevant stakeholders and an impact assessment, including an evaluation of the efficacy of measures proposed and necessary fundamental rights safeguards.

Progress for victims of #hatecrimes in Spain!

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We are pleased and proud to inform that after over two+ years of relentless advocacy by Pro Igual´s team, the Valencia police signed a formal agreement with the OSCE to start police training on hate crimes within the TACHLE program.

We believe this will be a major step towards practical implementation of rights of victims of #hatecrimes, who overwhelmingly tend to be from the most vulnerable groups: minorities, immigrants, undocumented persons, and so forth.

We also hope this pilot will be replicated across Spain and will continue working towards this goal.

Pro Igual Continues Surveying Hate Crimes in Spain in 2016

Survey16Spanish

Pro Igual continues its initiative to survey individual experiences with hate crime in Spain. If you were a victim or witness of a hate crime, or know someone who was, please help us raise awareness of the true scope of the phenomenon by taking part in our online survey on hate crimes in Spain, and sharing the link among your contacts and networks. The 2016 survey is available in Spanish. All responses are strictly confidential. Thank you for your help!

New Guide and Toolkit on How to Use the EU Victims’ Directive

PICUMguide

By November 16, 2015 all EU member states (except Denmark) have to implement the EU Victims’ Directive (Directive 2012/29/EU) establishing minimum standards on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime, irrespective of their residence status. PICUM in which Pro Igual participates has published a Guide to the EU Victims’ Directive with resources for members and partners, to inform and to inspire action to advance the rights of undocumented victims of crime. Read more…

CIDDHH Pro Igual es Asociación sin ánimo de lucro registrada en el Ministerio del Interior con el nº 595496.