Category: reports

Pro Igual´s New Shadow Report on Hate Crimes in Spain

Islamophobic Graffiti

Every year, Pro Igual´s shadow report on hate crimes in Spain focuses on specific aspects of this phenomenon. The theme for the 2013 report, submitted to the OSCE-ODIHR, has been remedies for victims.

The backdrop for hate crimes in Spain is severe economic crisis accompanied by the continuing rise in xenophobia and violent extremism of neo-Nazi groups. Yet remedies available to victims of alleged hate crimes are less than adequate, which explains why the reporting of hate crimes is extremely low, as compared to informal estimates of hate-motivated incidents.

Through combination of media monitoring and field work, the Pro Igual shadow report provides an overview of high profile hate crimes reported across Spain in the course of 2013 and highlights some of good practices reported or launched in 2013. Although Pro Igual´s focus is on xenophobia and racism, hate crimes based on other bias motivation (such as homophobia, disability or political orientation) have also been recorded.

On the basis of those findings, Pro Igual has made the following recommendations, both to the Spanish authorities and to the OSCE-ODIHR TND Hate Crimes unit:

To the Spanish Authorities:

  • Introduce an electronic hate crimes reporting system – similar to the one for reporting terrorism, money-laundering and other crimes.
  • Introduce and widely publicize a hate crimes hotline – similar to the one for reporting gender violence or terrorism.
  • Under no circumstances penalize victims, even those in an irregular administrative situation, who come to report hate crimes.
  • Invite OSCE training for the Spanish police on prosecuting hate crimes and assisting victims.

To the OSCE:

  • Launch OSCE-wide online reporting system for hate crimes victims and witnesses to report such incidents.
  • Encourage OSCE Member States to seek training for the police on prosecuting hate crimes and assisting victims.

The full report in English is available here.

Pro Igual Continues Surveying Hate Crimes in Spain in 2014

CrimenesOdio2014

Pro Igual continues the initiative, launched last year, 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 2014 survey is available in Spanish and English. All responses are strictly confidential. Thank you for your help!

Pro Igual Survey on Hate Crimes in Spain 2013

HateCrimesSurvey

Monitoring and documenting hate crimes is one of Pro Igual´s core projects. We realize that many victims do not report hate crimes because they fear repercussions, or because they think nobody would believe them. As a result, an estimated 95% of such crimes remain unreported. And the Spanish State has no incentive to address this problem. If you were a victim or witness of a hate crime, please help us raise awareness of the true scope of the phenomenon by taking part in our online survey on hate crimes in Spain in 2013 available in Spanish and English. All responses are strictly confidential.

The Treatment of Migrant Women in the Spanish Detention Centers for Foreigners

Pro Igual´s Intervention at the OSCE Human Dimension Implementation Meeting, Working Session 3: Violence Against Women

The following are the summary and recommendations of the joint report by Spanish NGOs Pro Igual and Ferrocarril Clandestino on the situation of migrant women in Spanish Detention Centers for Foreigners. The full report is available here.

Detention Centers for Foreigners are prisons in all but a name. Both governmental institutions and civil society have decried the appalling conditions and violations of human rights there. What is important to note is that detainees have not committed any crime, but merely an administrative infraction of not having papers in order, which presents less danger for the public than incorrect parking.

While both men and women face violations of their human rights, female detainees face a number of specific concerns. These include: sexual harassment by the guards; ill-treatment of pregnant and breastfeeding women; separation of mothers from minor children; lack of access to general medical and gynecological care, and lack of adequate nutrition even for pregnant women. Victims of human trafficking get no support whatsoever, even though they may be eligible for residence on humanitarian grounds.

Many migrant women end up in detention centers because of police raids based on the controversial practice of ethnic profiling, condemned by a number of international human rights bodies.

On the basis of these findings, we would like to recommend to the Spanish authorities the following:

  • Human rights NGOs and monitors should be allowed to enter detention centers and privately interview inmates – this is often sabotaged by the centers´ directors.
  • All personnel of the detention centers must wear visible identification badges and face sanctions for failure to comply.
  • All allegations of ill-treatment, especially sexual abuse of female inmates, by the guards must be investigated and prosecuted.
  • All inmates should have access to independent legal counsel, and translation if necessary.
  • The authorities should declare a temporary moratorium on expulsions of migrant women, pending the review of their cases.
  • Women detainees in particular should have gender-sensitive healthcare and adequate nutrition.
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women should under no circumstances be detained or separated from their children and families.
  • Suspected victims of human trafficking should receive necessary legal, medical and other assistance.
  • The authorities should decisively end ethnic profiling practices by the police.

The Rise of the Extreme Right Parties to Power

Pro Igual

Pro Igual´s Intervention at the OSCE Human Dimension Implementation Meeting, Working Session 2: Tolerance and Nondiscrimination

In the course of 2012 and 2013, PRO IGUAL conducted monitoring of hate crimes committed by Spanish extreme right elements against immigrants, minorities, and other vulnerable groups. The aim of the project has been, besides documenting individual cases, to explore the origins, specifics and the reach of the extreme right.

The project highlighted certain weaknesses in the Spanish legal and policy frameworks. Spanish legislation, on the one hand, allows proliferation of parties and organizations propagating intolerance. But on the other hand, it fails to provide adequate recourse for victims. In addition, victims often either do not know how to complain or are afraid. This serves to create a climate of denial and impunity for hate crimes.

PRO IGUAL reports and other materials on the subject are available on the website. In the meantime, we would like to make the following conclusions and recommendations relevant for a number of countries in the OSCE region.

Recommendations:

  • The Governments must recognize the reality and the danger of the extreme right ascent to power, and not dismiss the right-wing extremism as fringe behavior of a handful of marginalized youths.
  • It is also important to recognize that the extreme right has received a Public Relations makeover. We are no longer dealing with just crude manifestations, such as shaven heads or military boots. The contemporary extreme right is an increasingly sophisticated and insidious ideology that masks hate as care and violence as freedom, and actively uses democratic means to attain undemocratic ends.
  • Appeasement does not work. Some of the mainstream parties tried to woo the extreme right voters by embracing xenophobia. But they will never be radical enough for the extreme rights, but will instead lose their core supporters alongside with integrity.
  • Economic crisis and corruption must be addressed urgently, as they feed into the extreme right´s popularity. Ineptitude in handling the economic crisis, lack of transparency and seemingly endemic corruption turn the mainstream, moderate voters away from the established parties into the grip of the extreme right.
  • Laws must protect the victims of right-wing extremism, not provide loopholes and excuses for perpetrators.
  • It is not enough to be reactive; it is essential to become pro-active. This means the alarm must be raised BEFORE the extreme right ascend to power. Otherwise, with each new victory of the extreme right, there will be fewer countries even left to condemn it.
  • Last but not least, the Governments should work treat civil society as an ally, and not as a nuisance, as presently civil society is the only force resisting the rise of the extreme right to power.

 

Right-wing Extremism in Europe: Country Analyses, Counter-Strategies and Labor-Market Oriented Exit Strategies

This anthology was compiled as part of a project entitled “Confronting right-wing extremism by developing networks of exit-oriented assistance.”

Pro Igual and Ferrocarril Clandestino present a communication to the UN Commision on Women

FERROCARRIL

Within the framework of our work on the rights of (undocumented) migrants in Spain, Pro Igual has cooperated with Ferrocarril Clandestino and presented a joint communication to the UN Commission on the Status of Women on the Human Rights Violations of Migrant Women in Spain: Detention in CIEs.

The communication draws the UN Comission´s attention to singling out of migrant women through ethnic profiling and disproportionate use of deprivation of liberty for migrant women for mere administrative infractions, such as not having paperwork in order. Migrant women in CIEs suffer a range of human rights abuses, ranging from absent due process or legal counsel, to discrimination and sexual harassment, to separation from families and small children and lack of healthcare even for pregnant women.

Pro Igual and Ferrocarril Clandestino put forth recommendations to the Spanish authorities to remedy this situation.

The text of the submission is available here.

The Rise of Neo-Nazism in the Party Political System

The recent report by the The World Jewish Congress recorded a disturbing rise in extreme right, xenophobic and anti-Semitic political parties across Europe, echoing with Pro Igual´s own findings of the past years.
The WJC report is available here; the excerpts of the Executive Summary are as follows.
“Parties with neo-Nazi leanings have seen a significant resurgence, particularly in Greece and Hungary where, respectively, Golden Dawn and Jobbik have either achieved double figures in elections or are polling at such levels in opinion surveys. Both have seen their support rise dramatically from small beginnings. …
“There are good reasons for believing that governments are either conflicted or confused in their approach to neo-Nazi parties. In Greece, the government does not appear to know what to do. In Hungary the governing party wants Jobbik’s votes at the next election, and in Germany, where the National Democratic Party does not have wide support but is feared for historical reasons, the government has backed away from outlawing it believing that its efforts would fail at the Constitutional Court.
“Economic crisis is in some cases plainly a contributory factor in the growth of neo-Nazi parties. The Greek economy has declined by 20 percent since the crisis began with general unemployment now standing at over 27 percent and youth unemployment at over 60 percent.
“Anti-Semitism remains a central feature of neo-Nazi parties even though their main focus in many European countries is on non-white minorities. The anti-Semitic rhetoric is often extreme, as when a Jobbik parliamentarian last year called for a list to be drawn up of the country’s Jews in order to assess whether they represented a security risk to Hungary.”
The full report is available here.

The CIE Archipelago: Inquiry into the Italian Centres for Identification and Expulsion

ArcipelagoCIE
CIEs are a shameful reality across Europe. The Italian NGO Medici per i Diritti Umani (MEDU) recently published a report “The CIE Archipelago: Inquiry into the Italian Centres for Identification and Expulsion.” The MEDU report includes an overview of the situation of 11 CIEs in Italy and a comparative analysis of CIEs elsewhere in Europe. The summary of the report is available here.

Salvemos la Hospitalidad · Respuesta Parlamentaria

hospitality

Respuesta parlamentaria emitida el 18 de junio de 2013 sobre la inclusión de la solidaridad en el Código Penal, dentro del borrador de la reforma de dicho documento que está elaborando el Gobierno.

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